If you are dealing with a car dealer or manufacturer that has sold you a lemon, as well as does not follow California lemon law, you might think that you have a slam dunk legal victory on your hands.
You better wipe your hands clean by contacting a California consumer protection lawyer who has compiled an impressive record winning lemon law cases for clients.
The auto industry is represented by some of the most powerful and influential attorneys working in the United States. Rarely does a car dealership or manufacturer simply lay down at the feet of a customer that filed a lemon law claim. The question is not whether you should work with an experienced lemon law attorney.
The question is what should you look for when hiring the best California lemon law attorney.
Not All Lawyers are Created Equal
In other words, you should look for one or more red flags that tell you to look elsewhere for legal representation for your lemon law claim. When you conduct research, look for one or more of the following red flags that scream “Not this lawyer!”
Passes Your Claim to a Team of Paralegals
We told you lemon law cases are difficult to win because the auto industry employs powerhouse lawyers to represent them in court. What you should also know is California lemon law contains several ambiguities, which means what looks like a slam dunk to you is in fact a toss-up between you and a car dealer or manufacturer.
You do not want to hire a lemon law attorney who passes your case on to a team of paralegals.
Accepts Your Case Without Scheduling a Consultation
Submitting a short Contact form or speaking with an attorney for a couple of minutes over the phone does not cut it when searching for an accomplished consumer protection lawyer. Any attorney under consideration should request a free initial consultation to determine the best course of legal action.
Lacks Experience in California Lemon Law
Because California lemon law includes numerous vague provisions, you must hire an attorney who has considerable experience litigating California lemon law cases. You should avoid a lawyer who treats a consumer protection case like a moonlighting gig by low balling other attorneys just to earn a few extra bucks.
Remember that your lemon law attorney should work for you on a contingency fee basis. This means working with the best lemon law attorney should not break the bank.
Be on the Same Page
Your lemon law attorney works for you, which is a fact many consumers forget when hiring a lawyer to fight for them in a civil court. You and your lemon law attorney must be on the same legal page starting with your attorney agreeing to seek the type of recovery that you want.
California lemon law allows for three types of recovery:
- Vehicle buyback at full value
- Refund for all payments made on a vehicle
- Civil penalty up to two times the amount of actual damages
Dismiss any attorney who ignores your wishes and instead, goes for a type of recovery that does not work for you, but puts more money in the lawyer’s pocket.
In Your Attorney You Trust
You can put a number on the number of lemon law cases won by an attorney. However, there is not a number that quantifies the most important factor in choosing an attorney.
It is called trust.
How do you find a trustworthy attorney? Online reviews represent a good place to start, but just to get a general idea about the character of a lemon law attorney. Some online reviewers leave negative reviews for no valid reason.
Ask for referrals from the people you know best, such as close friends, family members, and professional peers. Word of mouth advertising remains the most accurate way to measure the trustworthiness of a lawyer.
The Bottom Line
There are few things in life as frustrating as having a lemon vehicle sitting on the driveway or in the garage. A drawn-out lawsuit that takes months to unfold ramps up the frustration level. By working with a lemon law attorney that you trust and specializes in lemon law cases, you should be on your way to a more expedient conclusion to your claim.
Make sure any attorney on your shortlist does all the work for a lemon law case, as well as works on a contingency fee basis.