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Thread: Workshop retaining vehicle after performing unapproved repairs, not even quoted for!

  1. #1
    Silver Member Darkangelyaya's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Workshop retaining vehicle after performing unapproved repairs, not even quoted for!

    I need some information please:
    My vehicle broke down and was towed in to the company who replaced most of the engine in June, at a cost of R28 000.00. I saw it as a warranty repair, and the vehicle was towed in to the said workshop, two weeks ago.

    At NO stage was I ever informed that this was NOT going to be repaired under a warranty claim. I called the Owner of the workshop daily for updates. At NO stage whatsoever was I ever informed that the vehicle is being repaired AT MY OWN COST. At NO stage did I receive any quotation, estimate, or information that an estimate will be done once the engine has been opened. I NEVER signed any CPA forms, or gave any written consent at all; I never even telephonically or verbally consented to repairs being done. (I record important phone conversations).

    On Monday, I was informed that they are putting oil in the vehicle and will test it on that day, and that I can then come and fetch it as soon as I have paid the bill. I was blown away, and enquired as to when I actually gave permission for repairs not under warranty, and in fact... where was the quote?!!! I then received the quote, with Monday's date on it - for R 12 000.00.

    I have lodged a formal complaint with their Head Office, who referred me to the MIO for arbitration, as the franchise is independantly owned.

    The owner, a woman, went into a screaming fit yet again, on the phone today, becoming very abusive, and screaming that 'that f'in vehicle will not go anywhere until it is paid in full'. (Recorded).

    They are refusing to hand over my vehicle.

    Surely this is a clear case of violation of my rights under the CPA, and I have the law on my side to fetch my vehicle - the workshop must then decide if they want to proceed with legal action towards recovering 'their money' (Sarcasm is mine)???

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    Platinum Member sterne.law@gmail.com's Avatar
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    Regarding retaining possession - this is allowed without a court order as it is a lien.
    It is unclear what you mean by referring to a warranty. Was this an agreed warranty OR is your stance based on the Consumer Protection Act 6 month warranty and your argument is that the repair was a transaction and therefore you believe that you have a 6 month warranty?
    Anthony Sterne

    www.acumenholdings.co.za
    DISCLAIMER The above is merely a comment in discussion form and an open public arena. It does not constitute a legal opinion or professional advice in any manner or form.

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    Darkangelyaya (07-Nov-12)

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    Silver Member Darkangelyaya's Avatar
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    Thanks for the reply, Anthony

    I have a written warranty printed on the invoice paid in June, when the major repairs were done. It is a six month, or 10 000km warranty on all repairs done as per stated invoice. I am not relying on the CPA alone in this.

    However, after getting a number of different legal opinions from different people, I decided to just do it myself, and go and fetch my vehicle. (Actually, I decided this yesterday afternoon after a phonecall during which I was screamed at, sworn at and verbally abused on record by the deceptively well-groomed, 'honest' and 'religious' owner of the workshop)

    So I did. (Not great security there.)

    I fail to see how the workshop wil react now, since they have NO records of any type, indicating any agreement for repairs on my vehicle.

    What is that thing about possession being 9/10ths of the law again...?
    (She did act rather possessed)

    Lesson learnt: 'Get everything in writing and record every conversation remotely considered important.' (And err on the side of caution when someone says: 'Really? We'll see about that')

    "There is none so dangerous as the one with nothing to lose"

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    I think that the problem lies in this statement "I thought it was a warranty repair". Lets say you took the car in and simply said "please fix it" and they did fix it as you requested then it is your own fault for assuming that it is a warranty repair and that they are obliged to quote you first. They did as you asked!

    As the saying goes "assumption is the mother of all f*ckups"
    How easily someone is offended is directly proportional to how stupid they are.
    ~GS Elevator

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    Did u pay when u fetched your vehicle?

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    Platinum Member sterne.law@gmail.com's Avatar
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    They were still required to give a quote before doing any work.
    Once you took the car, they lost their lien over it.
    Anthony Sterne

    www.acumenholdings.co.za
    DISCLAIMER The above is merely a comment in discussion form and an open public arena. It does not constitute a legal opinion or professional advice in any manner or form.

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    Darkangelyaya (08-Nov-12), Dave A (08-Nov-12)

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    Why were they required to give a quote if the lady didn't ask for a quote?

    I ask this because when I take my car in for a service and don't ask for a quote then they simply go ahead and do whats needed.
    How easily someone is offended is directly proportional to how stupid they are.
    ~GS Elevator

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    If I am not mistaken, it is now part of the CPA law.
    If you give no quote and do the job, and the client does not pay, then you have no right to demand payment, as you were not authorised to do the job.
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
    Solar and LED lighting solutions - www.microsolve.co.za

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    Darkangelyaya (08-Nov-12)

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianh View Post
    Why were they required to give a quote if the lady didn't ask for a quote?
    Read S15 of the Consumer Protection Act.

    Having just had a JSE listed company try to prematurely wriggle out of a contract today by trying to invoke a clause in the CPA, I had better mention that the CPA does not apply at all where the consumer is a juristic person with assets or annual turnover exceeding (currently) R2 million in terms of S5 2) b), and many of the other sections start with a clause that can further limit applicability too.

    I'll say this too, CPA or not, nowadays I wouldn't do any work for anybody without first giving an estimate and receiving written authorisation to proceed. It's just good practice that stops all kinds of needless nonsense.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

  13. Thanks given for this post:

    Darkangelyaya (08-Nov-12)

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    Silver Member Darkangelyaya's Avatar
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    The vehicle was taken to the specific workshop in order to determine whether it was a warranty claim or not. This was my instruction.
    If it was a valid claim, then obviously I would've had to be informed, and they would've had to repair it under warranty.
    If it wasn't, then they had to inform me of such, and given me the opportunity to decided whether I want them to QUOTE on repair, or whether I want to have it repaired somehere else.

    @adrianh: Nope, I definitely did not ask them to fix it.

    @flaker: No, I didn't. And I am not going to, ever. Watch them try and get this to court.

    @Justloadit: Indeed. Truth.

    Of course they also tried to sabotage the vehicle by doing itty-bitty things such as removing the inner housing of the radiator cap, so it would overheat after a while. But I expected something like this, and was one step ahead. (Oh, make that two, since I have my vehicle back, and they have no right to claim any payment from me).

    @adrianh: A service is something completely different from determining the validity of a warranty repair. For starters, you requested the service. I did not request a repair. And even under a service, they are required to list and quote on everything, and get additional permission from the client to fit anything unusual.

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