If an auto parts store employee put the cables on backward when replacing my battery and the wiring and electrical is now destroyed, can I sue for another car?

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If an auto parts store employee put the cables on backward when replacing my battery and the wiring and electrical is now destroyed, can I sue for another car?

Had to bring the car back to the shop 4 times now and it still overheats. I think the car might be done. I have car facts from it, never anything wrong with the car until the employee fried the electrical. Very stressful and frustrated all I wanted to do was change the battery.

Asked on July 21, 2012 under Business Law, Idaho

Answers:

Mark Petersen / Snake River Law PLLC

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You may have a claim for negligence on part of the employee. You will have to prove damages which will require you to prove that the employee's negligence and/or error caused the damage to your vehicle. To prove this you will need an independent opinion from another mechanic. Once you prove the damage to your vehicle, you will still need to prove monetary damage. Typically this will be limited to the damage caused by the mechanic. If his negligence resulted in damage to other areas of the engine then this would be included in the damages. As proving damages can be tricky, I recommend that you hire a lawyer to assist you with this process. If the value of the vehicle is minimal (less than $5,000) you may also pursue this action in small claims court, however, an attorney cannot represent you in small claims court.


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