Lemon Law would not apply here but you may have some protection under Florida's consumer laws. I strongly recommend you consult with an attorney in your area.
Douglas R. Coenson, Esq.
You say you purchased the vehicle with an "as-is" warranty. What exactly does it provide in the event that the vehicle is loaded with defects? Did you have a mechanic of your choosing inspect the truck before you purchased and took title? You need to examine this "warranty" very closely. If you have any rights at all in this situation, they'd be defined in the documentation. In the meantime, gather up all your documents and see a lemon lawyer, you could have some rights under FL law.
An "as is" offer is usually a big red light to put you on notice that you need to have a good mechanic with your interests in mind (it's worth the $$$) inspect the vehicle very closely and take it out and drive it hard to determine how it handles under stress. If the dealer objects, then walk away.
As Is means NO warranty, but, it does not mean they can get away with taking advantage of you. If they lied to you or cheated you or hid the truth from you then you may have legal rights. Find someone good for a low or no cost consultation here;
A few observations. The "as is" clause does not necessarily defeat a fraud claim or express warranty claim. See the Tinker v. De Maria case http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=8805548221790429420&hl=en&as_sdt=2&as_vis=1&oi=scholarr Many car dealers wrongly believe that an "as is" clause is an automatic get out of jail free card.
There may be a duty to warn of latent defects. See Section 501.976, Fla. Stat., and specifically subsections 3 and 4 which make it an unfair and deceptive act for a dealer to: (3) Represent the previous usage or status of a vehicle to be something that it was not, or make usage or status representations unless the dealer has correct information regarding the history of the vehicle to support the representations.
(4) Represent the quality of care, regularity of servicing, or general condition of a vehicle unless known by the dealer to be true and supportable by material fact.
In summary, if the dealer wants to make representations about the prior use or status of a vehicle, it has a duty to be correct and telling a half truth is not sufficient. Therefore, it must disclose the bad with the good including latent defects. Rarely, if ever, do dealers not say anything about the prior use or status of a vehicle. Other articles on car buying tips can be found on my website under the articles tab. My website is www.ForTheConsumer.com. I wish you the best in the future.
If this information has been helpful, please check the thumbs up tab below. Disclaimer: The above is intended to give you some insight into various legal topics. This information is not intended as legal advice, but rather an attempt to provide helpful topical information. Please consult a lawyer as to the specific circumstances of your case. Again, this is not to be considered legal advice nor does an attorney-client relationship exist. If there are more facts that you overlooked and did not include in your initial question and you would like to email me, you may send an email to email@example.com. Steven M. Fahlgren Attorney, Arbitrator and Certified Circuit Civil Mediator Law Offices of Steven M. Fahlgren, P.A. Phone: (904) 845-2255 Phone: (407) 852-1711 www.ForTheConsumer.com www.FahlgrenLaw.com www.SteveFahlgren.com
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