How federal warranty law can protect you against defective products

Most states honor implied warranty, which is a basic promise that a product will do what it is supposed to do
Published: Nov. 1, 2023 at 1:58 PM CDT
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(InvestigateTV) — The Magnuson Moss Warranty-Federal Trade Commission Improvements Act protects American consumers from a variety of defective products, such as appliances and automobiles.

The federal law helped Richard Houston in a situation involving the latter.

When Houston noticed paint peeling off his brand-new vehicle, he tried to remediate the issue with the dealership. After several failed attempts, Houston turned to Bob Silverman, a consumer attorney with Kimmel and Silverman law firm.

“What (the law) means is, they can’t fix your car within a reasonable period of time, or a reasonable number of days in the shop—they owe you money!” Silverman explained. “They owe you a percentage of or a portion of your purchase price back, for the difference between what they promised you—and what you got.”

Silverman said it’s important for consumers to know their legal rights and re-read warranties from time to time, especially if there is an issue.

“The most important thing is don’t be taken advantage of. Document, document, document, and if you’re not getting anywhere, and you think you’re being taken advantage of…find a credible, honest good lawyer to talk to,” Silverman said. “Don’t sign anything until you’re comfortable. And never go with a lawyer who is going to charge you a fee!”

Houston is happy he fought back and wants people out there to know they have every right to do the same.

“You do have a voice, you just got to keep going,” Houston said.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has a guide to understanding consumer rights under the Magnuson Moss Warranty.