Bob buys a car that meets the "lemon-law" presumption of California's lemon laws; to collect civil penalties for non-willful violations, he needs to serve a notice on the manufacturer. But the manufacturer is already represented by an attorney who demanded Bob not to contact the would-be-defendant manufacturer. What is the correct course of action for Bob?
According to Civ. Code § 1794(e)(3):
"After the [vehicle met "lemon law"], the buyer may serve upon the manufacturer a written notice requesting that the manufacturer comply with [its replace-or-refund duties]. If the buyer fails to serve the notice, the manufacturer shall not be liable for a civil penalty pursuant to this subdivision." (boldface added)
Does that "may" mean such permission that can overcome the prohibition that Bob directly contacts manufacturer if their attorney (1) asserts they will represent manufacturer going forward, (2) that all communications be directed to the attorney, and (3) expressly commands to cease any communications with manufacturer?
Does it mean that such service of process duty shall be complied with through the attorney or it means that, for compliance with the subparagraph of the paragraph of this subdivision, Bob may still -- and to assert the rights conferred therein, in fact, must -- make contact directly with the manufacturer?
This could go both ways, and no direct authority helps.
Any analogous situation?