I purchased a defective wheelchair two months ago, and the company I bought the wheelchair from refuses to fix it or return my money. Do I have any recourse?

Yes. On June 12, 1998, West Virginia enacted a Lemon Law statute relating to assistive devices. Some examples of assistive devices are wheelchairs, motorized scooters, hearing aids, communication devices for the deaf, optical scanners, talking software, and braille printers. 

This statute, West Virginia Code §§ 46A-6E-1 et seq., provides consumer protection regarding devices purchased to aid disabled persons with communicating, seeing, hearing, or maneuvering. The law creates a one-year implied express warranty on all assistive devices purchased, leased, or delivered in West Virginia. If you, or someone you know, possess an assistive device that is defective, contact the Consumer Division of the West Virginia State Attorney General’s Office at 1 (800) 368-8808 or 1 (304) 558-8986. 

Occasionally a company that makes assistive devices will recall the device because the company learns that the product is defective, a health risk, or otherwise violates standards set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). If the assistive device you have is recalled, the company will either notify you directly or will take the necessary steps to notify the public. The FDA oversees the recall to ensure that adequate steps are taken to protect users of the recalled product. 

Additionally, the Federal Trade Commission, the Food and Drug Administration, and other agencies have programs and information available to seniors who feel they have not received what they bargained for. Below is a list of resources available to senior citizens who are experiencing consumer problems: 

Problems Related To: CONTACT: 
Hearing Aids The Federal Trade Commission, 1 (877) 382-4357, http://www.ftc.gov

The Food & Drug Administration, 1 (888) 463-6332, http://www.fda.gov

American Speech-Language-Hearing Assoc., 1 (800) 638-8255, http://www.asha.org
Nursing Facilities Regional Long-term Care Ombudsman, 1 (800) 834-0598 


WV Department of Health & Human Resources,  

1 (800) 642-8589, http://www.dhhr.wv.gov

US Administration on Aging,  

1 (800) 677-1116, http://www.aoa.gov

Eldercare Locator, http://www.eldercare.gov

LeadingAge (formerly AAHSA) 

1 (202) 783-2242, http://www.leadingage.org

Email: info@leadingage.org,  

The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (formerly NCCNHR) 

1 (202) 332-2275, http://www.theconsumervoice.org
Trying Alternative Medicines,  The Federal Trade Commission, 1 (877) 382-4357, http://www.ftc.gov

The Food & Drug Administration, (888) INFO-FDA; 

Switching Medicines to Save Money, or 1 (888) 463-6332, http://www.fda.gov

National Institute on Aging, 1 (800) 222-2225 http://www.nia.nih.gov

Buying Medicine Online Your county health department, http://www.dhhr.wv.gov/bph

American Pharmacists Association, 1 (800) 237-2742 http://www.pharmacist.com

U.S. Pharmacopeia, 1 (800) 227-8772, http://www.usp.org

AARP, 1 (888) 687-2277, http://www.aarp.org

National Cancer Institute, 1 (800) 422-6237, http://www.cancer.gov

American Cancer Society, 1 (800) 227-2345, http://www.cancer.org
Direct Mail Schemes WV State Attorney General’s Office, 1 (800) 368-8808, http://www.ago.wv.gov

U.S. Chief Postal Inspector, 1 (877) 876-2455 or contact your local postal inspectors office, http://postalinspectors.uspis.gov

The Federal Trade Commission, 1 (877) 382-4357, http://www.ftc.gov

National Institute on Aging, 1 (800) 222-2225, http://www.nih.gov/nia

For more information, see: W. Va. Code §§ 46A-6E-1 to -7 (2015); U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Learn About Medical Device Recalls, http://www.fda.gov/MedicalDevices/Safety/ListsofRecalls/ (last visited June 9, 2015).