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§3.01 Vehicle Repairs—Governing Law

Lesson 3:
Vehicle Repairs, Sales, & Leases

The Automotive Repair Act [B&PC §§9880 et seq] governs automotive repairs in California. The Act is designed to foster fair dealing, promote safety, and eliminate misunderstandings in transactions involving automotive repairs. It prevents auto repair businesses from obtaining possession of a vehicle by saying repair work will be done at an agreed figure but later charging a substantially increased sum. [See B&PC §9884.9(a).]

The Act applies to all persons who, for compensation, engage in the business of:

  • Repairing or diagnosing motor vehicle malfunctions [see B&PC §9880.1(a)],
  • Rebuilding automobile parts [see 55 Ops Cal Atty Gen 276 (1972)], or
  • Restoring motor vehicles [Schreiber v Kelsey (1976) 62 CA3d Supp 45, 49–50].

The Act does not apply to persons doing minor work, e.g., tire repairs or changing minor accessories. [See B&PC §9880.1(e).]

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