The purchase of a new watercraft, such as a pontoon boat, motorboat, sail boat, or jet ski can provide an exciting recreational experience, but these vessels involve a significant investment. Consumers who spend thousands or tens of thousands of dollars on a watercraft find it frustrating to continually take the boat back to the dealer because of persistent mechanical or safety issues and defects. Our boat lemon law attorneys represent consumers stuck with lemon vessels. Depending on your circumstances and state, you might be entitled to a replacement boat, refund of what you have paid, or settlement for a partial refund.
At Stern Law, PLLC, we have successfully represented hundreds of new boat owners disappointed by faulty and defective boats. While large corporations that manufacture boats often suggest that the only option for consumers is to repeatedly return to have a problem repaired, our experienced lemon boat lawyers advise our clients of their rights under state lemon laws, the federal lemon law, and other consumer protection statutes. Ken Stern has over three decades of experience taking on the manufacturers of defective products, such as boats and PWCs. We offer a free case evaluation, so contact us at Stern Law, PLLC at 844-808-7529 or submit a confidential lemon law inquiry form today to schedule your free consultation.
Are Boats Covered under State Lemon Laws?
While state lemon laws, including the lemon law in Michigan, are often limited to cars, trucks, and SUVs, there are other legal options for consumers with a lemon on their hands. There are multiple strategies we employ if our client has purchased a defective boat that is not covered under a state lemon law. However, there are two forms of protection that have particular interest for consumers: (1) the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (“The Federal Lemon Law”) and (2) the Consumer Protection Act.
Federal Lemon Law (Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act)
This federal statute protects consumers who purchase virtually any consumer good provided the product was subject to an express written warranty. If a product is worth more than $25 and subject to an express warranty, The Federal Lemon Law might provide protection to consumers who purchase a faulty product with defects that are not cured despite reasonable chances. Under the statute, the product manufacturer or other party obligated under a warranty must remedy a defect within a reasonable amount of time or a reasonable number of attempts. If the manufacturer or other designated party cannot remedy the problem, the statute mandates that manufacturers replace the product or refund the buyer’s money.
While some people attempt to handle their lemon law boat claim on their own, vehicle manufacturers often refuse to issue a refund or to provide a replacement boat. However, Ken Stern understands how to leverage the full power of The Federal Lemon Law against watercraft manufacturers. The statute balances the scales of justice for individual consumers against large boat manufacturers by authorizing consumers to receive their money paid toward the purchase or a replacement boat and also an award for court costs and attorney fees. Because the statute permits consumers to receive separate compensation for these legal expenses, consumers have nothing to lose by hiring an experienced watercraft lemon lawyer.
Michigan Consumer Protection Act
This statute (and similar laws in other states) protect consumers who are the victims of fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation when purchasing a boat. The law also provides relief if you purchase a boat that does not function. The statute covers a vast range of deceptive and fraudulent practices, but the most important protection for consumers of goods subject to a warranty is the provision that makes the failure to provide “promised benefits” a violation of law. In Michigan, judges have ruled that a warranty falls within the meaning of “promised benefits.” Failure of the party obligated to perform under a warranty to satisfy its terms is considered to be in violation of the MCPA. The manufacturer or another party must do more than simply make attempts to fix the problem; the law requires the problem be remedied. Like The Federal Lemon Law, the MCPA authorizes a consumer to receive damages like the money invested in the boat, and it also provides for an award of attorney fees and court costs. The attorney fee provision in both of these statutes means that an experienced lemon law lawyer should not need to charge you any upfront money.
Speak to a Watercraft Lemon Lawyer
If you have been deceived, cheated, or burdened with a defective boat, Stern Law, PLLC provides representation against makers of all types of boats and personal watercrafts. We welcome the chance to speak with you, so call Stern Law, PLLC at 844-808-7529 or submit a confidential lemon law inquiry form today.