What can I do if I had work done on my car at a local transmission repair shop but it has just broken down again?

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What can I do if I had work done on my car at a local transmission repair shop but it has just broken down again?

I was told a new transmission was being put into my vehicle, the receipt I received said the transmission was rebuilt. I got the car out on a Friday and the following Wednesday my car broke down again the same exact way it did the first time. The shop is refusing to fix my car or refund any of my money back, I was told I had a 6 month warranty. They also released my car to someone else without my permission and told this other party that the problem was not the transmission but did not give a explanation of what the problem is. The shop is also refusing to show me any evidence or paperwork with the work the say the performed on my car.

Asked on December 6, 2014 under Business Law, Tennessee

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

You can sue the repair shop for breach of contract for installing a rebuilt transmission instead of a new transmission and for releasing the car to another person without your consent.  

In addition to a cause of action (claim) for breach of contract, your lawsuit should include a separate cause of action (claim) for breach of express warranty for not complying with the six month warranty.  Your lawsuit should also include an additional cause of action (claim) for breach of implied warranty of merchantability.  The implied (unwritten) warranty of merchantability means the work done by the repair shop is required to be of a quality acceptable in the trade.

Your damages ( amount of monetary compensation you are seeking in your lawsuit) would be the cost of repairs.  If you have the work done at another repair shop, you will need to mitigate (minimize) damages by selecting a repair shop whose fees are comparable to other transmission repair shops in the area.  If you were to select the most expensive repair shop you could find, you have failed to mitigate damages and your damages would be reduced accordingly.

If you need a rental car while your car is being repaired, the cost of the rental car should be included in the damages you are seeking in your lawsuit.  You will need to mitigate (minimize) damages by selecting a rental car with a reasonable rate.  If you were to select the most expensive rental car you could find, you have failed to mitigate damages and your damages would be reduced accordingly.


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