Am I responsible for paying an unreasonably high estimate?

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Am I responsible for paying an unreasonably high estimate?

My son was involved in a minor car accident. He was driving a friends car. We have an estimate from his friends mechanic which is unreasonably high. We were planning to get our own estimate. However their mechanic already started working on the car . We were never notified about this. Do we have to pay their mechanics price for the repairs?

Asked on April 10, 2012 under Accident Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

Robert Slim / Robert C. Slim - Attorney at Law

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Your son would be responsible for the "reasonable" cost of repairs, not the "cheapest" cost of repairs.  If you can get the estimate and photographs, take them to a repair facility that you trust and see if there is something out of the ordinary or inflated about the estimate.  Otherwise, your son would be responsible to pay for the repairs by the mechanic of their choice.  

Of course, your son's responsibility for the accident depends on whether or not he was at fault.  Additionally, since your son was entrusted with the vehicle from his friend, then you (as the parents) would not be legally liable for the damages.  You can play hard ball by making them go after your son (who probably doesn't have any money).  Make sure you notify your son's insurance company of the claim so that they can eveluate it and defend the claim on your son's behalf.


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