What to do if I got in a wreck and mechanic quoted $1600 to fix my car but is now charging me almost $2000?

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What to do if I got in a wreck and mechanic quoted $1600 to fix my car but is now charging me almost $2000?

I talked to the mechanic everyday. He never once said it would cost more than $1600 and when we got there he wanted to charge $2000. I repeatedly ask him if he needed more money for parts and he said no, he had all the parts. When we went to get out car he said it was more because he needed tires but aren’t these parts? Doesn’t he have to get my permission to spend more than 10% over estimate?

Asked on December 22, 2011 under General Practice, Kentucky

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If it was a firm quote, and was all inclusive (e.g. included parts, such as tires), then the mechanic cannot charge you more than the quote without your permission. (Sometimes, your permission can be implied but still be valid--for example, if you'd said, "That's good that you think it will only cost $1600, but the important thing is, I need the car fixed"--that could be taken as authoriztion to exceed the quote if necessary to make the repairs.)

Of course, if you and the mechanic cannot come to an agreement about this, you may find yourself in litigation, which has its own costs, monetary and otherwise. For a difference of $400, it may not be worth taking legal action.


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