The Kentucky Lemon Law

The Kentucky lemon law protects the owners of new motorized vehicles, registered for use in Kentucky, that develop an unfixable defect.

Does the KY Lemon Law Protect My Vehicle?

The lemon law in Kentucky covers all new vehicles with two axles, except for motor homes (recreational vehicles, or RVs), motorcycles and mopeds, farm tractors and other farm vehicles.

The coverage lasts for 12 months or 12,000 miles from the original date of delivery, whichever comes first.

The defect must have been repaired at least four times during the coverage period, or the vehicle must have been out of service for at least 30 business days during that period. And the defect cannot be due to negligence, abuse, or unauthorized modifications to the vehicle.

The defect must substantially impair your use of or the safety of the vehicle, or substantially reduce its market value. And it cannot be due to abuse, negligence or unauthorized modifications to the vehicle.

I'm Driving a Kentucky Lemon. What Can I Do?

If your vehicle meets the above criteria, you have a lemon. Now it's time to start your claim. You do that by writing to the manufacturer, stating your case and demanding compensation.

Send your letter by certified mail, return receipt requested. Photocopy your notes, all service orders and work invoices, and any other supporting documentation, and send those copies with your letter. Remember to photocopy your letter and keep the copy for your records.

Arbitration or Law Suit?

If the manufacturer has an informal dispute resolution system (or uses a third party's), you must use that system first before you can go to court. The arbitration decision in these systems is usually binding on the manufacturer, but not on you, so you're free to file a law suit if you disagree with the decision. You must file it within 24 months of the original delivery date.

If you decide to file a law suit, I recommend that you consult a lemon law attorney, a lawyer with Kentucky lemon law experience. If you win, you can receive attorney's fees, but if you lose, you could end up paying the manufacturer's attorney's fees. Be sure you have a winning case before you proceed too far.

Refund or Replacement?

The lemon law in Kentucky gives you the option of receiving a replacement vehicle or a refund of the purchase price.

If you choose a replacement, it must be a vehicle of comparable value, normally of the same make and model, with the same dealer-installed options, if any.

If you choose a refund, you'll receive the full contract purchase price, plus any trade-in allowance, plus sales tax, license and registration fees, financing charges, other government charges, and any other collateral charges. The manufacturer is entitled to deduct a reasonable use fee based on the miles you drove the vehicle.

Kentucky Lemon Law Summary

The lemon law in Kentucky is available to the owner of any new motorized vehicle. Once the vehicle has been repaired at least four times, or has been out of service for at least 30 business days, it qualifies for compensation.

NOTE:The information here is not legal advice and is only presented to you so you can know your options if you purchased a lemon. As with any legal issue, you should seek the advice of a qualified attorney.


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