Seattle, WA asked in Consumer Law and Lemon Law for Washington

Q: I recently bought a used car from a dealership. Within 3 days it had electrical problems and turned off while driving

I was able to start it up just enough to pull into the dealership since I was close by. They said they fixed it after one day. A week later the same issue happened again, three more times it did not turn on. The last time nothing on it came on at all. I called the dealership and they've now had the car for 4 days. I have not heard back until today when they said they couldn't find anything wrong with it besides the battery. The service guy who worked on the vehicle told me there is something really wrong with the vehicle and was not comfortable giving me back the vehicle, but the service manager is rushing me to take it back so I can return the rental car they are paying for me. I've asked them to replace the vehicle with another one, but they keep avoiding the topic. What can I do at this point?

Related Topics:
1 Lawyer Answer
Greg Freeze
Greg Freeze
  • Port Townsend, WA
  • Licensed in Washington

A: The Washington statute covering the "lemon law" is RCW 19.118 et. seq. The "et. seq." means "and what follows." Basically, you can start reading at RCW 119.118.005 about the "intent" of the legislation put into law, and when the 19.118 series of statutes ends.

A big case for lemon law attorneys involved a used vehicle. Here is a quote from the case. "The basic purpose of lemon law legislation in this country is to permit buyers of faulty automobiles to rid themselves of same after a reasonable number of attempts at repair." Chrysler Motors Corp. v. Flowers, 116 Wn.2d 208, 211, 803 P.2d 314, 316 (1991).

Reading through the statutes, you will find that RCW 19.118.160 gives the buyer the opportunity to use the Attorney General's office in getting a free arbitration. Just having that slight bit of knowledge might help you with your discussions with the general manager of the lot.

Disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.