Paint shop jail! Should I bail?

NOT A TA

Veteran Member
Feb 12, 2009
454
Delray Beach Florida
For production collision shops, especially those considered direct repair, a lot of the importance of moving insurance jobs through has to do with rental car coverage by the insurance companies and how the expense can end up coming out of the shops pocket if the work isn't performed within the time allotted by the insurance company. So they're forced to move the cars through or risk only breaking even or possibly losing money on certain cars.
 

bondora68

Veteran Member
Dec 14, 2014
622
Mobile, AL
For production collision shops, especially those considered direct repair, a lot of the importance of moving insurance jobs through has to do with rental car coverage by the insurance companies and how the expense can end up coming out of the shops pocket if the work isn't performed within the time allotted by the insurance company. So they're forced to move the cars through or risk only breaking even or possibly losing money on certain cars.
Yes, This is what he told me!
 

pooch400

Member
Feb 21, 2012
40
waterbury
If he’s going through a divorce, I’m sure there’s going to be some sort of monetary split which is probably affecting his business. Warning signs are there especially if there’s only one employee. It’s hard to do since you put some cash down. Cut you losses and run. You may be able to get some of it back by telling him it’s a breach of contract or threatening small claims court. Probably not worth it though. Get your car and parts out of his shop before you go this route though.
JM2C
That’s sound advice. Definitely file in small claims court. It’s not expensive to file in small claims court. File the claim for the full amount of the job under breach of contract and legal fees. Worst case scenario you only get what you paid. If he doesn’t show up you win. Make sure you file with the clerks office right away to attach his income. Otherwise you’ll never see the money or you’ll have to go back to court. Good luck
 

severum17

Member
Sep 5, 2001
95
South of Dallas TX
For production collision shops, especially those considered direct repair, a lot of the importance of moving insurance jobs through has to do with rental car coverage by the insurance companies and how the expense can end up coming out of the shops pocket if the work isn't performed within the time allotted by the insurance company. So they're forced to move the cars through or risk only breaking even or possibly losing money on certain cars.
I ran a dealer body shop for a few years. This is true. HOWEVER you need to take into consideration your customer pay cars. You can put them back for awhile but not forever. They still have to be done.
 

Tavern

New Member
Dec 13, 2015
3
Los Angeles
OK, I need some advice. I dropped off my 71 at the paint shop on July 5th of this year. The shop owner and I agreed (on paper) that he would finish final bodywork and paint the car within 60 days. I gave a down payment of $1500 to get things rolling. The remaining $3500 would be due after the job is finished.
Very little has been done to my car. The whole car has been sanded and that's about it. It has been over 90 days and all I get is excuses. It looks like he is having trouble keeping employees and maybe even keeping the doors open. My car is covered in body shop dust inside and out. My interior is brand new and now covered in thick dust. The engine is also covered in dust. They pulled the rear windshield off for paint and did not bother to cover it. Only one employee remains and is doing all the shop work.
My worry is that his shop is going under and that I will show up one day to find the place permanently locked and closed and my car will be trapped in red tape and court cases.
Should I just cut my losses and go get my car? Do I trust that he will finish the job? I check on the car twice a week and I get stories about how they are "about to start working on it" but that never happens. The owner is a poor communicator who avoids me and is never at the shop. He is going through a divorce and I'm worried that my car is just not a priority anymore (if it ever was).
I understand that I am getting a good price on the work and I understand that some people wait much longer to get their cars back but I don't want to ignore red flags that can be trouble if I wait. I have heard horror stories about cars getting stripped for parts and cars getting stolen or sold...
What should I do?
View attachment 148357
I hope you took your car back. I had a similar experience with a car shop the suspension was being worked on and my car was on the lift when the owner died. Man, it was a mess I say cut your losses I did lost over 1k but I was never so happy to get my girl back home in pieces but home. I ended up doing the job myself. Good luck
 

200mph

Z28 Historic Trans Am racer
Oct 22, 2008
20
NC
The police/sheriff may decline to get involved, since no crime has yet been committed.

You should alert them, in writing and in person, and whatever agency in your state licenses body shops. Provide them with a detailed explanation of what has taken place. This should include a statement that you are going to retrieve the car, and if you are unsuccessful, you will ask the police to charge him. Bring a copy of this report to the body shop if they resist releasing your car.

I would suggest, as above, you offer to take the car back and forget about the $1500. If he resists, explain you will file suit to impound the car, AND recover your $1500. Often the threat of legal action will help get your car back.

You may then need a lawyer to determine the proper charges and how to get your car back if you suspect he may try to sell it or part it out.
 

FlaJunkie

Veteran Member
Lifetime Gold Member
Mar 24, 2001
6,464
Rockledge, Florida
Having been in a similar situation, I bailed as soon as possible. Best thing I ever did.

I can tell you he is doing just enough to placate you. Get out while you can.
 




Top