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Has your dealership had your car for over 1 month?

What To Do If The Dealership Has Had Your Car For One Month


The Lemon Law in the United States guarantees automobile purchasers the right to a functional and working motor vehicle. If you’ve leased or purchased a vehicle under warranty and discover the car has a significant defect within a requisite time limit; you can file a claim.

If the dealership has had your car for a month due to issues with the vehicle they should either give you a replacement, repurchase it, or fix it.

Whatever way you look at it, being denied your vehicle from a service manager is never a pleasant experience. A lemon law lawyer can help you receive compensation depending on how long the new vehicle has been held by the dealership. When a dealership holds a person’s vehicle for over a month it is highly recommended to contact an attorney for a free case evaluation.

Dealer Service Department Problems

Suppose the dealership cannot repair the automobile within a month. This leaves you with two options. Some of our clients worry that this rule only applies if an authorized dealership or certified repair shop cannot fix the problem. This is not necessarily true. Even if the car can be fixed, you could still have a case. The Lemon Law protects car owners from the headache and costs associated dealing with car problems caused by the manufacturer. 

If the Service Department Can’t Get Parts to Fix Your Vehicle in A Timely Manner, You Have a Lemon Law Claim

Every facet of professional and personal life has been impacted by the arrival of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. That has undoubtedly been the case with supply chains, as these certified repair shops have been unable to get parts from manufacturers, primarily if they are based in other countries. 

Supply chain interruptions, order quarantining, and shutdowns have negatively affected foreign and domestic automakers alike. In particular, there has been a recent global shortage of specific semiconductor chips required for a vast range of technological items, including motor car systems.

What happens if you find a fault in your car and the dealership tells you they are waiting for the parts to repair the issue? Some of our clients have waited up to four months for the dealer to get the required product. 

The Lemon Law in the United States

The question is, have you been stuck waiting over a month for repairs to your car under warranty?

If so, the United States Lemon Law offers some important protections is not based on a dealership’s bad or good faith. A lemon law case requires answers to these involves two questions: 

  1. Did the dealership sell you a new or used car that’s defective, or
  2. Have you has it encountered a problem within the warranty period?
  3. Can the dealership repair the car within an appropriate amount of time? 

Answers to these questions will help us determine if the Lemon Law can work in your favor.

What Qualifies as a Lemon?

In order for a new car to qualify as a lemon under United States law, you must have made multiple attempts to repair the defect. Typically, four or five repair attempts should be sufficient for general weakness. If the fault creates a severe safety hazard or is extremely dangerous, you may only need to make two trips to the car repair workshop.

Moreover, if a repair shop has a car for over 30 days or more, that may be enough to satisfy the Lemon Law in various states. There is nowhere in the Lemon Law that specifies an exception for repairs that may occur if the required part was readily available.

If you have taken your car back to the repair shop numerous times and have had to use a rental vehicle or have been unable to drive for a month, you have the right to take legal action. Considering your legal options is crucial if you ask yourself the question, “the dealership has had my car for a month; what’s next?”.

Remedies Under the United States Lemon Law

Vehicle Repurchase

The dealership must pay cash to the value of the purchase price of the vehicles and any other costs incurred, including the following:

  • Sales tax
  • Registration/license fees
  • Finance charges
  • The down payment on the loan
  • Monthly payments while the car was not driving
  • Tow truck cost
  • Rental car expenses
  • Legal fees

These expenses can be claimed on a new vehicle or a used one as long as you have an extended warranty. Every dealership that sells cars in the United States is monitored by the Lemon Law to set a level of fairness amongst consumers. That is why our lemon lawyers can help you with a free consultation to determine the deserved compensation. 

Whether your vehicle is fixed under a warranty issue or not, no dealer has the right to keep a car for such an extended period. It hinders a person’s ability to perform daily tasks and is a massive inconvenience.

If you have paid for the car with your own money, the dealer has to fix it, repurchase it, or replace it to fulfill the warranty. In the case of a brand new vehicle, the dealership offers a replacement car and pays back any owed money to the client.

Replacement Vehicle

Upon completion of a successful claim, the dealership could be required to provide you with a new vehicle of the same model, make, trim, and style as the malfunctioning car.

A dealership may offer to fix the car, but you can avoid that by getting it replaced if it can be replaced. If you originally owned the vehicle, you’ll need credit records for all the payments made to a bank or financial institution. The lease or loan may not be extended at the dealership, and all payments made towards the loan attached to the faulted vehicle get added to the new car.

Furthermore, the dealership must pay other incidental costs if the dealer has taken more than a month to fix the car. These expenses below include but are not limited to:

  • Expert fees
  • Court costs
  • Attorney expenses
  • Down payment on repair cost
  • Vehicle renting charges

This compensation is meant to protect consumers who have dealt with a lemon.

If the dealership has had your car for a month it’s time to contact us for a free consultation. Nobody deserves to be taken for a ride when it concerns the repair of their vehicle. 

A dealer must communicate effectively with customers and let them know what is happening with the repair process every step of the way. When a dealer keeps a vehicle for over a month without any form of compensation, the best thing to do is remain calm and contact a lawyer immediately.

Trust Representation and Advice from our Seasoned Lemon Law Attorneys

If you are seeking compensation from a dealer regarding your vehicle repairs, we would like to offer you a free case assessment. Our lawyers are experienced and knowledgeable in Lemon Law and can assist you in receiving the compensation you deserve.

Over the last decade, we have helped thousands of drivers get back on the road after an incident with a dodgy dealership. You have the right to a fair service, and we can help you fight for what is legally owed to you.

Comments (7)
  • I just sent a request to be contacted.. I started of leasing the car in 2018 in the state of WV then after Covid there was a car shortage when my lease expired so I purchased the car which I was not happy about but had no choice. Shortly after my purchase in April of 2022 Car began having issues with starting that was happening once a week. It would not want to start but then would start after several tries but should not even of been that difficult to start. After a couple of months it began happen more often to point had to have it towed but once dealership began accessing it car started right up which is typical of how it had been acting. They had it a week and swore car was fine they had no issues.. I got the car back and it did it again but decided to video the incident on my phone. sent it to them and they requested I bring it back they might have a solution to the problem after watching the video. I returned car to them…. it has been a Month and they are now telling me in that months time it would not start for them but only once when the car was doing it for me 2xs a week to point you would have to let it sit for a while before starting it would work. They are telling me they cannot find the issue because the car has to not start for them to find a cause and fix. I purchased an extended warranty as well with the car. As of now they have had the care since Sept 12 2022 it is now OCT 14, 2022 . They also have no intentions of providing a car to use or making this right.

  • Hi my car is going into the shop tomorrow because they think they may have to put a motor in it. And I was told they will keep my car for 6 to 8 weeks my car is being fixed under my warranty. I have only had this car for 11 months and have 5 more years to pay on this car . And I feel that the sold me a lemon.

  • I have a vehicle which has a recall for a break booster. The dealership gave me a rental of far inferior quality of my vehicle. The dealership has had my vehicle for over 3 months. My vehicle is paid for. What can I do?

  • I have a suv in a delarship for repair but being over 2 months and they not be able to get a parts for my repair intake valves for a yukon 2015 really common i dont understand and i also paying out of poket because the warranty expire before it breakdown i dont know what to do i just need my car back but the same time need advise of what can i do against dealers like this .

  • I bought a new Gmc At4 2022 I purchased it approximately 8 months ago and the motor is bad and they cannot locate a replacement motor. I really need my truck. I am a contractor they gave me a small SUV loaner which does not work for My business. And that is suffering because I do not look like a contractor I need some help I would like to just get my truck back but if they can’t fix it, I would like to get a new truck. I can’t go on without a truck that is my best tool in my business.

  • We bought a car, a green Ford, in 2016. We have always taken it to the Ford dealer for its oil changes. After driving 88,000 miles, within 2 days of having it returned from the dealer for an oil change, the engine burned up. We tried to make a claim, but the seller we bought it from said it had a lifetime warranty, which turned out to be false. We ended up at the dealer’s business and they took the burned car and gave us another one that was almost new, with only 7,000 miles on it. However, after driving it for 15,000 miles, it already has an exhaust problem. We tried to take it back to the dealer through Lemon Law, but they said it only applies to first owner cars. It’s been since December 18th and now it’s 2/22/23, but nobody knows how to help me. To get a car to be able to go to work, I have to fight, and now I don’t know what to do. My wife doesn’t want to take that car because if it burns again, we’ll be back to the same situation. We’re already tired of dealing with Ford. What should we do? We don’t want to get into more debt by buying another car, which they are offering us for $59,000.

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