Why You Should Read your Car’s Warranty Booklet: Philippine Lemon Law

Read the manual, we’ve been told, even if you don’t follow it. When it comes to motor vehicles, many (but not all) drivers make it a point to read the Vehicle Manual. Only a few, however, bother to read the Warranty Booklet. There’s now a reason why owners and drivers should pay attention to the Warranty Booklet as well. The President recently signed the Philippine Lemon Law (see full text of Republic Act 10642, also known as the Philippine Lemon Law; see also the Q&A on the Philippine Lemon Law). This new law provides for specific steps and procedure for a consumer to avail of his/her rights (refer to the Steps in Availing of Consumer Rights under the Lemon Law).

One required step is giving the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer a written notice, referred to as the Notice of Availment of Lemon Law Rights. The notice should contain the unresolved complaint and the consumer’s intention to invoke his or her rights within the Lemon Law rights period. Where do you find the manner and form of such notice?

You’d find it in the warranty booklet. The law requires the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer to clearly state — in the warranty booklet — the manner and form of such notice to constitute a valid and legal notice. The booklet must also clearly state the responsibility of the consumer to notify the  manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer. For reference, Section 6 of Republic Act 10642 reads in full.

SEC. 6. Notice of Availment of Lemon Law Rights. – Before availing of any remedy under this Act and subject to compliance with the provisions of Section 5 hereof, the consumer shall, in writing, notify the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer of the unresolved complaint, and the consumer’s intention to invoke his or her rights under this Act within the Lemon Law rights period.

The warranty booklet issued by the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer shall clearly state the manner and form of such notice to constitute a valid and legal notice to the manufacturer, distributor, authorized dealer or retailer. It shall also clearly state the responsibility of the consumer under this section.

So, you see, be sure to read the Vehicle Manual AND the Warranty Booklet. Disregard at your own risk.

2 comments

  1. The IRR must be published in public the same with the Philippine Lemon Law. Although there were few discussions regarding the IRR, it seemed that the consumer is not fully protected by this law.
    Take my case, where my Chevrolet Orlando acquired on Dec.19,2014, where failed to start after 10 days and distance travelled was 684 km only. The battery was recharged but we were advised that in 30 minutes, everything will be back to normal. After almost an hour, my son noticed that the steering used to be locked or the tires are moving back when you steered it one direction. So I decided to send back the car by towing it.
    Today, the initial finding was a defective battery.So the dealer replaced it. My concern and question is, how about if this problem happened again while the car is being driven and resulted to a worse scenario?
    I am NOT CONFIDENT ANYMORE WITHE SAME UNIT, but under this law, I can only invoke the Lemon Law rights unless five repair attempts has been made.
    The law clearly states that, a vehicle can be declared as lemon if it impaired the use and safety of the consumer, and it is proven that the vehicle failed to comply for its specification.In this case, the battery was found to be defective because its an old stock, so it also clearly showed that, it did not confORM to the specification of a “BRAND NEW” vehicle because it has an old battery.

    1. I also experienced that my car stalled in the road because of “airlock”. the car is just barely a month with us and i wanted it replaced because i no longer have the confidence with the unit and i would fear that we might be stuck in the road again for the same reason.

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