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Transmission repair fraud

I took my 99 Jag w/93,000 miles in because of slow engaging into reverse. I was told they would do a “free road check” they asked to me to leave it. Sure enought 2 hrs later they called and said they had to take it down and inspect. When I asked how much they said it is probably just a bad belt. I asked what would be the cost in this case. They said $1800. take down and put back plus about $80. part. I said the car is only worth about $5000. I don’t want to spend alot. The invoice was over $3550!!!’

Here are the violations and frauds I believe I have:

1. They never told me they had a $550. take down and replace inspection for a quote. That I would have taken and NOT authorized the repair, just traded it in.

2. Three times a.before the work was started, b. during the work and c. at the time they told me the car was ready I said “I want the old parts.” To which Larry the mgr assured me I’d get them. When I picked up the car I was told by Larry, “I guess they threw them out” They billed me for a rebuilt @$674. plus other parts etc.

I had have searched the internet and found a number of states that have laws protecting the consumer from not being given there parts however, I can’t find one for Arizona. Does anyone know of one?

Michael V

Did you sign anything to perform the work? Typically a quote has to be given before work proceeds unless you sign something to let them have at it.

Also was there anywhere written to save parts?

I think your best approach is negotiating the bill not thinking you are not paying which I gather you do want to do.

You might not have any recourse. Check with a lawyer.

In future, the two things I’d suggest is

  1. stay at the shop with the vehicle when they do the diagnosis.
  2. write on the shop order “old part must be returned to customer”. That makes return of the old parts a contractual deliverable.

No written order to do the repair it was done on the phone.

No written order of course to save parts, however, i did
conplain to the corp. office of Aamco and the "investigator"
did say the mgr. Larry did recall me asking and “don’t know
why the parts were not saved”.
thank you, Michael

Start here:

It defines Arizona consumer fraud law and how it might pertain to this transaction. You can file a complaint on line.

Thank You.
Michael V

If the way you describe things is spot on (I would have to question you directly) then you really got took. Things like this make agencies like Californias Bureau of Automotive Repair (if they even still exist) a good thing. First thing they do is go over the repair order, if any mistakes are present the shop is pretty much doomed. I am talking about things like quotes,signature,mileage,dates and times, there are many ways this Bureau can find a shop at fault that are pretty much procedural errors, but here in AZ, this is the Wild West.

I had a VW shop in CA in the 80’s and early on I rebuilt a Type IV VW Bus engine (and installed it) well a dispute happened between myself and the customer and simply because I wrote the repair order 1 day before my license was issued she got the rebuild for free.

AAMCO reeks anyway and this is strictly a wild guess, but I would be willing to bet they have their tails covered on this.

From your post I gather you authorized something which may or may not be debateable. It sounds like at the 1800 dollar point you gave tacit approval for them to do something.

Dont get too hung up on keeping the old parts. You have to remember that some parts have core charges on them where the shop needs to return them to the supplier or pay a core charge. I run into this too in my shop. Example, I had a Taurus transmission on my bench which needed a new valve body. Customer ok’d the vb replacement and said he wanted the old vb. I told him he could have it if he paid the $350 core charge. He didnt want it any more. I dont know exactly what was done to your transmission or if there were parts replaced which required a core charge but the reality is is that sometimes you just dont get the old parts back unless you want to come out of pocket with some more $$.