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The statute of limitation is legalese (legal talk); it means that a plaintiff (the consumer) has a specific time-frame or deadline to file a lawsuit against a defendant. After the deadline, the consumer will lose his or her right(s) to file a lawsuit, even if the consumer has a legitimate claim/case.

The deadline to file a lawsuit is discussed in a previous blog entry found here. This post relates to when the limitation is triggered. In other words, what date does it begin to count and the clock starts ticking against the consumer.

Although not all cases are the same, under applicable federal and state Texas lemon laws, the statute of limitation usually begins on the date the vehicle was purchased. Typically, this is found on the date that is written on the purchase agreement, or sales contract. Hence, it is important to insist that the dealer writes or prints the correct date on the sales agreement.

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(What if the dealer doesn’t issue a repair order for my visit/multiple visits?)

At my lemon law office, I get asked this question the most from frustrated consumers. It is important for the client to gather all documents and paperwork, including repair invoices (even those that are designated as “NPF” (no problem found); as such paperwork serves as evidence when our office discuss the claim with opposing counsel or manufacturer representative.

Without documents, it would be difficult for any attorney to accept the case. Does that mean you have no options or no case if you trashed all of your paperwork? The answer fortunately is no.

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Often times at my lemon law practice, I get calls from potential clients about non-lemon law related cases, such as a divorce or personal injury matter. I usually refer them to the local bar association for referrals. However, I recently stumbled upon a website that allows folks with a legal issue to have a free consultation with local attorneys. The website is newlawyer.com

The advantage that this site has over other similar sites is that it allows that user to give feedback to their experience with the attorney after the free consultation. Think of it as a version of Ebay’s feedback system, except this feedback system if about the attorneys and not about the auction. Click here to learn more on how the site works.

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Consumer Reports recently announced its top 10 cars for 2008. What I find interesting is that I have had represented clients under the Texas lemon law and Texas DTPA claims for most of the cars listed below.

So, this begs the question, does Consumer Report’s prize for best car lower your probability of being stuck with a new lemon car? My short answer is no. All make and models of cars have a certain percentage that are built defective — it is part of the quality control process. Interestingly, Chrysler vehicles are not included in this list.

Starting in the small sedan category is the Hyundai Elantra. The Hyundai Santa Fe wins for midsize SUVs. Best pickup truck goes to the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Crew Cab. Nods go to the Lexus LS460L for luxury cars, starting at $77,000. Unfortunately for Toyota, the Honda Accord gets the win for family sedan. Upscale sedan goes to Infiniti G35 while the Mazda MX-5 gets the “fun to drive” prize. My current car, the Toyota Rav4 is appointed the best small SUV. The Toyota minivan award goes to the Sienna. Last but not least, the best green car goes to the Toyota Prius.

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Although my Texas lemon law office tries to take on as many cases against the car manufacturers as possible, we can not accept every potential client’s case that goes through our door. In the event that you can not find a lemon law attorney to represent you on your lemon car, then I would recommend you not give up.

Juliet Bickford, WSLS Anchor for Channel 10 in Roanoke, Virginia, offers the following suggestions on how to complain effectively and successfully. After reading through her recommendations, I would have to say that I agree with her suggestions in light of lemon law car cases.

Some highlights of her suggestions include … addressing your concern with a manager or supervisor on duty. If that fails, then go straight to top management (company president, vice president, and etc). If that does not work, then try reporting the company to the Better Business Bureau (BBB). If all else fails, consider taking the company to small claims court.

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My name is Kevin Le and I am an attorney who handles lemon law related cases throughout the state of Texas. My office is based in Dallas, Texas.

Most of my time, potential clients would call me about a lemon law case and it would be too late because they have missed the deadline to timely file their claim. Other times, they are calling because this is the first time that they have purchased a new lemon car and do not know what to do. Other times, they are calling because they simply want to know what their rights are.

Regardless of what reasons you are here for, I welcome you!