Tennessee Lemon Law
Owning a defective vehicle is a hassle, but you do have rights under Tennessee lemon law. Here’s a summary of the law:
New cars: Yes
Used cars: No
Business vehicles: Yes
Leased vehicles: Yes
Lemon law period: 1 year
What is a Lemon Car Under Tennessee Law?
Tennessee lemon law covers new passenger vehicles, SUVs, vans, motorcycles, and trucks that are purchased in Tennessee and that weight less than 10,000 pounds. In order to be considered a “lemon,” the vehicle must meet the following requirements:
- Does not conform to the manufacturer’s express warranty
- Has substantial defects affecting the safety or value of the vehicle
- Has manufacturer’s defects that occurred during the first year from the original owner’s delivery date or before the expiration of the manufacturer’s warranty (whichever period ends first)
- Has been taken in three times for the same problem or if it has been out of service for 30 calendar days
- The manufacturer has been notified in writing of the defect within one year from the delivery date or the expiration of the warranty (whichever period ends first), and has had a final opportunity to repair the vehicle
- You have participated in the manufacturer’s informal arbitration program, if one exists
Tennessee Code, Sections 55-24-201 through 55-24-212 is the state’s lemon law.
Getting Lemon Justice: Tennessee Lemon Law Relief
Tennessee lemon law provides several options for a successful lemon law claimant. First, you may be awarded a replacement vehicle of the same year, make, and model. You may also qualify for a monetary award, which can include:
- The full purchase price
- Manufacturer- or dealer-installed options
- Credit life and disability insurance charges
- Sales taxes
- Title charges
- License fees
- Registration fees
- Other reasonable expenses
- Attorney’s fees
The amount of the monetary reward may be reduced by a deduction for your use of the vehicle, which is calculated at a rate of one-half of the amount allowed per mile by the Internal Revenue Service for any miles driven, plus any damage exceeding that of normal wear and tear.
Pursuing a TN Lemon Law Claim
If you want to pursue a claim under Tennessee’s lemon law, you must first send a notification to the manufacturer, and give them a final opportunity to repair it. Send your letter by certified mail, with a return receipt requested. Here’s a sample demand letter that you can adapt for your use.
Once the manufacturer receives your letter, they have ten days to repair the problem. You must also participate in the manufacturer’s informal dispute resolution process (if it complies with Federal Trade Commission regulations) before you are eligible to file a lemon law claim in court.
You can accept the findings of the arbitrator, or you can reject them and go to court. However, the suit must be filed within six months following the expiration date of your warranty term or within one year following the original delivery date of your vehicle, whichever is later.
How We Can Help
Wherever you are in the lemon law claim process, we’re happy to help. Whether you need help gathering the material documenting your lemon, submitting the final demand letter, negotiating a settlement, or appealing the arbitration decision, Lemberg Law will be at your side every step of the way.
Helping consumers is what we do. We’ve helped more than 15,000 people recover more than $35 million. You can read more about us here.
Remember that vehicle manufacturers have teams of lawyers that do nothing but fight lemon law claims. Lemon laws try to level playing field by forcing automakers to pay the consumer’s attorney fees in successful lemon law claims. That’s why our representation won’t cost you a dime.
There’s a limited window of opportunity for filing a lemon law claim. If you suspect you have a Tennessee lemon, give us a call today. We understand your frustration, and will do our best to deliver the justice you deserve.