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Submitting Your Request For Arbitration

 

Keep a copy of the Request For Arbitration for your records and mail the original form to the Lemon Law Administration. If you are approaching the 30 month deadline for submitting a Request For Arbitration, send the form and documents by certified mail (return receipt requested) or by ‘overnight’ express delivery, deliver it in person, submit it by FAX or email it to lemon@atg.wa.gov. Note: the date a Request For Arbitration is mailed is not accepted as the ‘received’ date.

On the Request For Arbitration form you are asked to state a preferred time for the hearing.  Arbitration hearing dates can be requested for business days during business hours or an evening at locations around the state. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO CONSIDER THIS CAREFULLY. IT IS VERY DIFFICULT (AND PROBABLY WILL NOT BE POSSIBLE) TO MAKE CHANGES AT A LATER TIME. The Arbitration Board will try to accommodate your schedule, but cannot guarantee to schedule your hearing when requested or when it will be most convenient for you.

When your Request For Arbitration has been submitted, you will be notified that your claim has been assigned to a Lemon Law Administration paralegal.   The paralegal, along with other staff, will be available to answer your questions, provide information and assist you as you prepare your claim presentations for the arbitration hearing.  In order to promote early resolutions, basic information from your Request For Arbitration form will be sent immediately to the manufacturers by the Lemon Law Administration.  You and the manufacturers are strongly encouraged to communicate with each other throughout the arbitration process about the possibility of a settlement even if earlier negotiations failed.

 

Completing the Form

Read the instructions for filling out the form.  Check that you have copies of all the documents and other evidence that you intend to include when you submit the form. When you send the Request For Arbitration form you must include copies of all required documents, records and repair orders.All registered owners of the vehicle must sign the form.

The Motor Home Request For Arbitration form contains separate pages for you to identify claims against eachmanufacturer by listing defects and the attempts to diagnose or repair each defect.  Make as many copies of the defect page as you need. If you have not completed these pages, your Request will be rejected.

Sometimes motor home manufacturers disagree about which manufacturer is responsible for a defect and which has potential Lemon Law liability if an award is made by an arbitrator.  If you do not know which manufacturer is responsible for each defect (start by comparing warranties), you must take your records and the motor home to an independent motor home mechanic to help you sort out responsibility. This will determine how you will present you claims and what you must prove to an arbitrator. How you present you claim will determine the information and evidence available to the arbitrator and will affect how an arbitrator makes a decision. 

Fill the form out completely. When completing the defect pages you must clearly describe each defect, identify when each attempt to diagnose or repair occurred, the mileage on your vehicle at the time of each attempt, the dealer or service department that made the repairs, and the number of days your vehicle was out of service due to diagnosis or repair. Add any additional explanations or information that you believe relate directly to defects or other elements of your claim on additional pages.

If the form is not filled out completely or the required documents are missing, your claim cannot be sent to the New Motor Vehicle Arbitration Board.  It will be returned to you with directions about how to proceed.

Information Needed to Complete the Request For Arbitration Form

You must send copies of the repair orders for all diagnosisor repair attempts related to the defect(s) in your claim. If you cannot provide the repair orders or other documents, you must explain the reason why they are missing on a separate page attached to the Request For Arbitration form. If you did not receive a repair order after an attempt to diagnose or repair a defect there may be records including mechanic’s notes and billing records about the repair at the service department. See: How to Obtain Documents and Other Records.

Scheduling Of The Hearing

On the Request For Arbitration form you are asked to state a preferred time for the hearing. Arbitration hearing dates can be requested for business days during business hours or an evening at locations around the state. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO CONSIDER THIS CAREFULLY. IT IS VERY DIFFICULT (AND PROBABLY WILL NOT BE POSSIBLE) TO MAKE CHANGES AT A LATER TIME. Arbitration hearing dates can be requested for weekdays and evenings at locations around the state.

The Arbitration Board will try to accommodate your schedule, but cannot guarantee to schedule your hearing at the requested city, when requested or when it will be most convenient for you.

Do You Need An Attorney?

The arbitration program has been developed so that a consumer does not need to have an attorney for most claims.  However, you always have a right to be represented by counsel for any claim. The manufacturer may be represented by an attorney.  Motor home manufacturers have attorneys represent them at arbitration hearings more frequently than car or truck manufacturers. Because motor home manufacturers may have attorneys, you should consider talking with an attorney early in the process.  This can be particularly important if your motor home claims have complex issues. Note: “Reasonable” attorney costs will be refunded to you in an award only if the manufacturer has also represented by counsel.

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More Topics on Motor Home Lemon Law

Before Requesting Arbitration | Completing the Form | After Requesting Arbitration | Arbitration Process | Arbitration Decision | Replacement or Repurchase? | Contact Us

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