An auto shop botched up a repair on my car badly, as they apparently did not have the proper equipment to fix it, do I have a case here?

UPDATED: Aug 8, 2012

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An auto shop botched up a repair on my car badly, as they apparently did not have the proper equipment to fix it, do I have a case here?

My car was hit in an accident and I took it to a shop of my own liking due to good reviews. My insurance company paid for the damages but the shop botched up the job so bad that my rear body doesn’t sit right on my car, turns out they did not report some of the hidden damages. Not only did they put parts on incorrectly, but rust is forming and I have massive paint runs/debris stuck in the paint. A certified shop from my insurance company is estimating it is over $4k to get the car fixed the right way with the damages and the bad workmanship. How much could I sue for? Is it worth hiring a lawyer?

Asked on August 8, 2012 under Business Law, Virginia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You could sue for the  entire cost to correct damage or bad repairs done by the first shop. When a repair shop agrees to perform repairs, it takes responsibility for both how they are done and for their care of the car more generally. If they damaged the vehicle or performed substandard repairs, they are liable under one or more of the following theories:

1) Negligence--unreasonable carelessness, judged by the quality work a repair shop should do

2) Breach of contract--if they didn't do what they agreed or contracted to do

3) Fraud--if they lied about or misrepresented what they could do.

For $4k, it would worthwhile retaining an attorney to help you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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