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Tennessee Lemon Laws

States protect new car buyers from being stuck with an inoperable or defective vehicle through so-called "lemon laws." A lemon, generally, is a newly purchased automobile with significant problems that the dealer is unable to fix after several attempts. Lemon laws require dealers and manufacturers to provide a replacement or a refund. So in essence, state lemon laws serve as mandatory warranties for new car purchases (one of the biggest purchases most people make).

Under Tennessee lemon law, a new car must conform to all applicable warranties for up to one year. If a "nonconformity" can't be resolved within the statutory period, the vehicle (passenger automobile or motorcycle under Tennessee law) would be considered a lemon.

Some of the main provisions of Tennessee lemon law are listed in the following chart. See FindLaw's Lemon Law section for additional articles and resources, and Product Warranties and Returns for more general information.

Code Section 55-24-201, et seq.
Title of Act Not specified
Definition of Defects Nonconformity to all applicable express warranties
Time Limit for Manufacturer Repair Term of applicable warranties or 1 year following date of original delivery of vehicle to consumer, whichever comes first
Remedies Replace with comparable vehicle or accept return and refund full purchase price (cost paid by consumer including all collateral charges, less a reasonable allowance for use)

Note: State laws are constantly changing. We are constantly updating and improving our content, but you may want to contact a Tennessee lemon law attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

What Exactly is a Lemon Under Tennessee Law?

A nonconformity that "substantially impairs" a vehicle -- renders a vehicle unsafe, unreliable, or valued lower than its average resale market value -- is considered a lemon. The manufacturer, through the dealership, has a duty to repair any nonconformities. If the same nonconformity has been worked on at least three times without remedy, or if the vehicle is out of service for more than 30 days, it is subject to the terms of Tennessee lemon law.

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