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§3.03 Vehicle Repairs—Relief Available

Lesson 3:
Vehicle Repairs, Sales, & Leases

A dealer may not recover on a contract or have the benefit of a lien for labor or materials if the dealer is not registered with the Bureau of Automotive Repairs. [B&PC §9884.16.]

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The dealer’s failure to give the customer a written estimate bars any recovery for the work done, the parts supplied, or storage charges, including in an action based on quantum meruit, regardless of whether the customer authorized the work. Failure to give an initial written estimate also bars any recovery for orally authorized increases over the original oral estimate. [Donaldson v Abot (1987) 194 CA3d 817, 820–821.]

No lien taken by a repair shop on a vehicle in excess of $1,500 for work or services, or any amount in excess of $1,025 for storage, safekeeping, or parking space rental, or, if a lien sale application is filed, in excess of $1,250 for storage or safekeeping, is valid unless the repair shop gave actual written notice to the legal title holder and received the holder’s written consent before performing the work. [CC §3068(c)(1).]

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