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The Philippine Lemon Law

The Philippine Lemon Law

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The Philippine Lemon Law or Republic Act No. 10642 was passed to promote full protection to the rights of consumers in the sale of motor vehicles against business and trade practices which are deceptive, unfair or otherwise inimical to consumers and the public interest.

The act covers brand new motor vehicles purchased in the Philippines reported by a consumer to be in nonconformity with the vehicle’s manufacturer or distributor’s standards or specifications within twelve (12) months from the date of .original delivery to the consumer, or up to twenty thousand (20,000) kilometers of operation after such delivery, whichever comes first. The following causes of nonconformity shall be excluded as stated in the Section 4:

(a) Noncompliance by the consumer of the obligations under the warranty;

(b) Modifications not authorized by the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer;

(c) Abuse or neglect of the brand new motor vehicle; and

(d) Damage to the vehicle due to accident or force majeure.

 

The consumer may invoke his or her rights under this act given that at any time within the Lemon Law rights period, and after at least four separate repair attempts by the same manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer for the same complaint, and the non-conformity issue remains unresolved.

A Notice of Availment of Lemon Law Rights shall be issued in writing to inform all parties involved. Following the notice, the consumer shall bring the vehicle to the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer from where the vehicle was purchased for a final attempt to address the complaint of the consumer to his or her satisfaction.

It is the duty of the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer to take necessary actions to make the vehicle conform to their standards. The consumer may file a complaint shall the issue remain unresolved. The consumer shall also be provided of transportation allowance to compensate for the non-usage of the vehicle.

Remedies for dispute resolution, as stated in Section 8, are as follows:

(a) Mediation

(b) Arbitration

(c) Adjudication

The State recognizes that a motor vehicle is a major consumer purchase or investment. Hence, the rights of consumers should be clearly defined, including the means for redress for violations thereof.

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