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California Lemon Law Cases
Altman Law Group has Successfully Litigated hundreds of California Lemon Law Cases. Contact us Today to See if Altman can Help Get You a Manufacturer Buyback of Your Defective Vehicle.
Jury Trials Completed
Bryan Altman has been the lead attorney in well over 100 jury trials. He has achieved the highest lemon law jury verdicts in California on behalf of consumers just like you.
Verdicts and Settlements
The Altman Law Group has achieved more than $50,000,000 in verdicts and settlements for California consumers under the lemon law.
The Sooner You Contact Us, The Quicker We Can Help With Your Lemon Law Vehicle.
Your Attorney Fees are Paid for by the Auto Manufacturer.
Altman Law Group is on Your Side
California consumers purchase or lease more new cars than any other U.S. state. Most auto manufacturers or distributors provide consumers with a three (3) or four (4) year new car warranty, subject to a certain mileage cap. The vast majority of car owners have very few problems and love their vehicles. However, simply by the sheer number of vehicles sold in California, a certain percentage are simply defective. The vehicles are repaired and continue to have issues. Sometimes it is the parts themselves that are poorly made or are not assembled properly. Other times it may be a pervasive issue with the suspension, electrical, or engine system which simply causes parts to repeatedly fail far ahead of their expected lifespan.
Although California has very strong consumer protection laws which include the lemon law, the auto manufacturers generally do not comply with it until forced to. The dealerships get paid to repair vehicles under warranty by the manufacturer. They love defective vehicles because it makes them money and keeps their technicians busy. California law obligates that the manufacturer monitor their warranty repair database and promptly repurchase or replace defective vehicles. As with most other industries with regulation, it is more profitable for the manufacturer to do nothing, hoping the consumer has no idea of their rights and will just get fed up and trade in the defective vehicle.
California Law Does Not Give the Manufacturer An Unlimited Number of Repair Attempts
Other than perhaps a house, a car or truck is the most expensive item that most people ever buy. California has passed strong consumer protection laws that require the manufacturer to repurchase or replace defective vehicles. Unfortunately, it is far more profitable for the manufacturers to do nothing.
Altman Law Group is here to represent the rights of consumers in California. Simply because the manufacturer gives you a warranty does not mean that the manufacturer gets unlimited repair attempts to fix your car. The repair attempts are required to be reasonable. The number of days of repairs is also required to be reasonable.
We battle the auto manufacturer’s on a daily basis. We are able to assess your situation free of charge and let you know whether or not your vehicle is a lemon. It does not matter whether you leased the vehicle or purchased the defective vehicle, your rights in California are the same.
DO NOT WAIT AROUND IF YOUR VEHICLE IS DEFECTIVE and DO NOT LET THE DEALERSHIP CONVINCE YOU THE ONLY SOLUTION IS TO TRADE THE VEHCLE IN
We are here to help you. Contact Altman Law Group today.
Recent California Lemon Law Cases – Altman in the News
Meet Our Attorneys
The Altman Law Group has dedicated attorneys who are willing to fight for your rights under California law. We are aggressive where we need to be and are well respected in the industry by both Defense and Plaintiff attorney firms.
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Recent News from the Industry
Ford Faces First Federal Jury Over Fiesta, Focus Fracas
By Craig Clough
Law360, Los Angeles (November 5, 2019, 11:03 PM EST) — A California jury heard openings Monday in the first of nearly 1,000 consolidated federal cases to go to trial over alleged defects in Focus and Fiesta transmission systems, with the owner saying Ford should have bought the car back after numerous clutch replacements while Ford asserted the car is safe.
The federal case brought by Van Nuys resident Mark Pedante is part of multidistrict litigation consolidated in the courtroom of U.S. District Judge André Birotte and concerns Ford Motor Co. PowerShift transmissions that were used in 2011-2016 Fiestas and 2012-2016 Focuses, about 1.5 million vehicles in total.
Pedante purchased a new Focus in 2013, but despite the car only having 70,000 miles on it, it has needed eight new clutches installed due to a series of problems where the car would vibrate, lose power or have other acceleration and deceleration problems, Pedante’s attorney Bryan Altman of the Altman Law Group told the jury during openings.
Ford knew about the problems with the PowerShift long before Pedante purchased his vehicle due to its worldwide tracking system of warranties, and the PowerShift was found to have an overall failure rate of 100%, he said.
“The problem was that this new system malfunctioned often, and when it malfunctioned it was extreme,” Altman told the jury.
The federal cases were consolidated into the MDL in January 2018, and Ford agreed in March of the year to provide “substantial cash payments” and other benefits to owners of the Fiesta and Focus models that had to be repaired because of the allegedly malfunctioning transmissions. It’s a “claims made” agreement under which Ford must pay out all legitimate claims, so there’s no set value, but an expert for the drivers has estimated its value at $35 million.
The drivers who opted out opposed the settlement’s compensation structure, as those who don’t opt out would be forced into arbitration to pursue damages that they say are almost impossible for many to collect.
When Pedante approached Ford in 2016 — while on his fourth clutch — about repurchasing his Focus, he “was told to go pound sand,” Altman said, despite the state’s Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act, which requires manufacturers to replace or repurchase faulty products after a reasonable number of repair attempts.
Altman said Pedante is seeking relief for Ford’s violations of the Song-Beverly Act and for punitive damages. He also told the jury that after years of denials, Ford informed his legal team on Friday that the company was going to admit it broke the law.
Frank P. Kelly of Shook Hardy & Bacon, who is representing Ford, told the jury that his client acknowledges there are problems with the PowerShift and with Pedante’s vehicle, but that it is limited to a vibration felt in the driver’s seat known as a “shutter” that occurs for about one second at low speeds.
Kelly said the evidence would show that Pedante’s car “is, was, and continues to be a safe car for him to drive.”
Altman told Law360 after court that he represents about 170 of the MDL clients, but that there are also roughly 300 cases in California state court and he represents about 150 of them.
He also said that the first case in the nation to go to court over Ford’s PowerShift was a client of his, Ariel Myers, who won a nearly $700,000 judgment in July 2018 from a jury in Los Angeles Superior Court.
“It’s because of that case that you see they’ve got about 15 lawyers on this one,” he said, referring to the large size of Ford’s legal team that was in court.
Altman said that although the case is the first in the MDL to go to trial, it is not necessarily serving as a bellwether case because Judge Birotte stuck the fraud claims, a claim central too many of the other lawsuits. The jury in the Myers case found that Ford has committed fraud, although Ford has filed an appeal.
Kelly declined to comment, and Ford did not immediately respond to a request to comment.
Pedante is represented by Bryan C. Altman of Altman Law Group and Russell W. Higgins of Knight Law Group LLP.
Ford is represented by Frank P. Kelly of Shook Hardy & Bacon and Spencer Peter Hugret of Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani LLP.
The case is Pedante v. Ford Motor Co., case number 2:17-cv-06656, and the MDL is In re: Ford Motor Co. DPS6 PowerShift Transmission Products Liability Litigation, case number 2:18-ml-02814, both in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
—Additional reporting by Kevin Penton and John Kennedy.
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