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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
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    1

    Default Responsibility for Cost of Repairs Completed Without Authorization

    My question involves a consumer law issue in the State of: Illinois. I bought a car from a car dealership As Is. I drove the car home and the next day the engine light came on. I took it to an auto parts store to get a diagnostic. The code that popped up was for a bad catalytic converter and a defaulted passenger airbag. I went to a mechanic shop to get a second opinion. They also verified that there was a problem with the catalytic converter. They also let me know that the codes have been erased several times and that this was an ongoing problem. I took the car back to the dealership the next day. I let them know that my car will not pass an emission and that I felt that they sold me the car under false pretenses. I told him I wanted to return the car and I wanted my money back because I would have never purchased the car if there was a check engine light on. They told me that I was not able to return the car but that if I left the car they would have their service technicians look at it and get back to me about how much the repairs would be. I told them I feel I should not have to pay for any repairs. Again they told me that a service technician would contact me to try to resolve the situation and that nothing would be done to the vehicle until I okayed any or agreed to the resolution. I did not hear from them for the next two weeks. I called and I sent emails and still no response. A little after two weeks I got a call saying that my car was ready to be picked up. That the cost was $500 and that they would eat half of the cost. I told them I had never received a call from anybody and that I did not agree for the vehicle to be fixed. I was then told that they would only release my car to me if I pay $250 for the half of the cost and if I did not pick up my car that they would start charging me storage fees. I again called back and tried to talk to another sales manager or somebody higher up in the company. A gentleman contacted me back. He gave me two options. The first option he said was that the repairs we're only $390 and that I would have to pay $195 of it. Which is half of the cost. The second option he gave me was he would take the car back to the mechanic and get my old catalytic converter put back on and that I would have to pick up my car like that.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    in alto mare
    Posts
    1,123

    Default Re: Bought Used Car As is Took Drove It Home. the Next Day Check Engine Light Comes O

    What was your question? What do want to see happen?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Responsibility for Cost of Repairs Completed Without Authorization

    If you purchased the car as-is, then that means you did not have a warranty. If you did not purchase the car as-is, then whether or not a repair to your catalytic converter is covered by your warranty is something you will need to investigate by reading the terms of your warranty.

    If your issue is that you're being charged for a repair for which you received no estimate, and for which the dealership is now attempting to charge you, unless you waive an estimate Illinois law requires that a repair facility give an estimate and get consent for repair for any repair expected to cost the consumer more than $100. 815 ILCS 306/15. If you bought the car as-is, and they're chipping in half the cost of the repair as a matter of goodwill, that's nice of them, but it doesn't excuse them from the need to inform you of that plan in advance, to give you an estimate, and to get your consent for the repair. A dealership that fails to comply with 815 ILCS 306/15 is barred form imposing a lien on the vehicle. 815 ILCS 306/75.

    Your problem is that they have your vehicle, and aren't likely to simply give it back to you if you refuse to pay their bill. Your most obvious choices are to see if the police will assist you, or if they would regard it as a "civil matter", or to pay to get your car back and then to sue to get a refund in small claims court. You do have the option they're offering -- of having the car restored to a broken condition and having it fixed elsewhere -- but that would seem to be a significantly worse option than paying for a half-price repair.

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