Can I sue a mechanic for failure to repair my car when he has had it for more than 2 months and is charging me without completing the work?

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Can I sue a mechanic for failure to repair my car when he has had it for more than 2 months and is charging me without completing the work?

I brought my car to a recommended mechanic about 2 months ago to check out a strange noise. After several weeks he called and notified me that he did not know what was wrong, my uncle who lives 200 miles away in NYC was able to figure out the problem. The mechanic ordered a part and after 6 weeks in the shop I went to pick it up, I drove it home without problems. A couple of hours later I went to my car planning to go out when it wouldn’t start, he came and told me he would tow it back to the shop without charge. He still has not fixed my car and he is charging me more money for the tow.

Asked on July 8, 2011 under General Practice, New York

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

First of all, get your car out of there. Take a police escort with you and demand your motor vehicle back. Second, file a police report. Third, file a consumer complaint with your state attorney general and the agency (if any) who licenses auto mechanics and auto repair shops. You need to sue for any monies you paid back and you might as well sue for the monies you had to pay your lender or lease company (if these apply) during the time this motor vehicle was in the shop. Why? Because you did not have use of the vehicle and by holding it for such an unreasonable amount of time and negligently repairing the vehicle and charging you for a tow to fix the negligent repair, the auto mechanic essentially converted the use of the motor vehicle to his or her own use.


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