If we want to see the effectiveness of the Lemon Law, we need look no further than the state of Connecticut. In early October 2012, the Connecticut Car Lemon Law celebrated its 30th anniversary. And it did so with some pretty impressive numbers.
For instance, since its inception, the Lemon Law managed to return upwards of $60 million to Connecticut cat buyers in the form of refunds and replacement vehicles. Connecticut was the first state to ever pass the Lemon Law and very soon after that, many other states across the US followed suit.
It was a benchmark law for US consumers because up until that point, car buyers were only able to hold car dealerships accountable for faulty vehicles; meanwhile, car manufacturers were asked to hold no responsibility. Of course, Lemon Laws put a stop to this and freed car buyers of the hassle of spending time and money in courts as they sought recourse. After Lemon Laws began to take effect, it was the car manufacturer that had to answer to and solve the problems of defective parts and equipment.
Connecticut made sure the public knew about the power a Lemon Law could bring to them as consumers. It was quickly understood that refunds and resources to help those that had suffered from faulty cars did not exist, the Connecticut Public Interest Research Group (ConnPIRG) put their full support being the bill, written into action at the time by Representative Woodcock. A media spectacle was made of the law, including a press conference where lemonade (called “lemon aide” at the conference) to clue the public in to the issue.
The result? Support came from far and wide, including a large portion of bi-partisan majorities in the House and Senate. It was a landmark in consumer protection, one that continues to save people headaches and unnecessarily spent money today.
The sad thing is that many people assume that there is no recourse to be had when they purchase a faulty vehicle. But with Lemon Laws in place all around the country, there is help. if you feel that you have a lemon situation on your hands, look into what you need to do in order to file a lemon law claim in your state.
Connecticut is just one example of how the Lemon Law has worked for the public and it’s important to learn from the past, particularly when it comes to consumer protection.