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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 75974
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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Over the past year Iv had issues with a car specialist

Customer Question

Hi there. Over the past year Iv had issues with a car specialist garage. I own a bmw that the engine failed on and over a few issues and the car still not repaired I think I need to take legal action.
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: I’m in South Wales
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: the car arrived with them last October on the 20th. I struffl d to get information off them over the months. Finally in February, I was told they can’t get the vehicle running after spending additional time and money on the electrics. I had the car repaired and parts they said were replaced wasn’t. After driving the car it still wasn’t correct. They told me to take it to a local garage they recommended. I was advised it wasn’t there work but other parts failed. so recently I finally saved up to repair the car only to be told that part of the repair a bolt was left loose.
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: my only worry is the iv ice I received it stated, “once corrected the vehicle will need to be returned for inspection and testing of the engine”. I’m really worried that me actually driving it for a mot and to the recommended garage has voided my warranty. It’s cost me £5500 so far to repair. The three garages Iv spoken to said, the car really shouldn’t have left them with unfinished work like the main crank bolt. If the engine was turned over or tried to start then it was going to fail the engine again
Submitted: 10 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

Hello, I’m Ben. It’s my pleasure to assist you today. I may also ask for some preliminary information to help me determine the legal position.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

What is your specific query in relation to this please, so that I can best advise?

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Good day, Ben. Would you like me to send you the invoice so you can read over before we contribute?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

That's OK, I won't need to see the invoice at present. If you can please tell me what your specific query is in relation to this situation, I will get back to you in writing on here

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I had my car engine rebuild by a specialist vehicle repair company called svs based in Cardiff. The service over the four months they had my car was terrible. They returned my vehicle because the electrics was a issue and they couldn’t find the problem, also they didn’t want to spend no more money on searching for the issue. I had the car dropped at my house by svs. I then had the car trailered to a auto electrician, within three days he had the car running. But stated it seems my vehicle may have had a fire, there was new fuel lines, a undertray missing and wire trunking also smouldered. The coil packs they stated they replaced, only one was replaced and it was wrong. After threatening svs to recheck my car before legal action, they agreed to recommend another garage (Lkf automotive) to inspect the vehicle. I was advised that the engine work svs done was ok, the vamps gears seemed to be the timing issue. So from February until two weeks ago I been saving for the car to be repaired. This time I was ted to use another garage after the trouble Iv had. So a company in Cardiff swss specialists had the vehicle, they inspected and come back with the crank bolt was loose and has failed the engine from being run. Now the company svs, are stating because I run the car and didn’t send it back to them for inspection that it’s not covered. I am looking to see if I have a case to have them commit to there warranty
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Sorry I couldn’t put paragraphs, it’s quite messy.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

OK I understand and thank you for providing this information. Please leave it with me and I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, usually the same day. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

Many thanks for your patience, I am pleased to be able to continue assisting with your query now. First of all, I am sorry to hear about this situation and any associated issues.

When a consumer enters into a contract for services, the Consumer Rights Act 2015 says that such services must be:

- Carried out with reasonable care and skill (to the same standard as any reasonably competent person in that trade or profession)

- Finished within a reasonable time (unless a specific time frame has been agreed)

In addition, any information exchanged in communications between the parties, whether written or verbal, is binding if the consumer relies on it to proceed with the services in question. If there are problems and the trader cannot satisfy the above criteria, which are legally expected of them, the consumer will have certain rights

In the event of substandard work, the trader should either redo the parts of the work which are inadequate or perform the whole service again at no extra cost to the customer. This must be done within a reasonable time and without causing significant inconvenience. If this is not possible, the consumer can claim a price reduction, based on the severity of the issues. That is something which should be negotiated between the two parties. However, if the trader refuses to resolve the issues, the consumer can consider getting someone else to do this and either deduct these costs from the balance that is still owed to the original trader, or pursue them for any extra costs that have been incurred as a result.

In order to resolve any problems that have arisen, it is generally recommended that the following steps are followed:

1. Collect all documents relating to the work (e.g. quote, contract, correspondence, etc.).

2. Contact the trader and explain your problem. Ask them to resolve any issues and set a reasonable time limit for them to respond (7 days is acceptable).

3. If the matter is still not resolved, write to the trader repeating your complaint and how you would like them to resolve the issues. Say you are giving them a final time limit of 7 days to resolve the problem or you will have to consider taking legal proceedings to recover your losses and any additional costs. This is also known as a ‘letter before action’ and there are plenty of templates if you do an online search for one.

4. If the trader fails to respond or refuses to resolve the problem, you could consider taking legal action by seeking compensation. Remember that court is a last resort, however threatening it can be a good negotiating tool because it shows you are serious about resolving this and may prompt the trader to reconsider their position.

5. Finally, make sure that you keep copies of all correspondence, in case it is needed in the claims process.

If you wish to take the matter further and issue legal proceedings, assuming you will just be claiming financial compensation, you may pursue your claim via the County Court’s online portal at https://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/web/mcol/welcome

You may also wish to consider reporting them to Trading Standards, which you can do via the following link: https://ssl.datamotion.com/form.aspx?co=3438&frm=general&to=flare.fromforms

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

Hopefully, I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I have been informed by the garage in respect of this issue (svs). That as the work was through a third party (nationwide engines) who now are closed and none existent. I will struggle to get any real documentation on the contract. The only think I have now are, two emails from nationwide engines that are expired and a invoice from svs them selves. I can’t even get a parts list from svs. To me my issue is with svs, who carried the work out. They seem to be very calm and just stated the invoice said to return the car. Did not say, “do not start or drive vehicle”. Would this be a case I can take up with the courts? I only ask as warranty wasn’t even a option to them this morning when I drove there to mention the car.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

Hi there, thank you for your further queries, which I will be happy to answer. A warranty is always discretionary but you still have your basic consumer rights as explained above. So it would still be possible to take it further on that basis, but obviously try and follow the steps mentioned to give them an opportunity to resolve these issues without legal action first, before you proceed with it

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I have send them a email to ask if they are going to honour there warranty. I will ask a few times as mentioned. Thank you fot your support
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 days ago.

You are most welcome. If you have any further questions about this, please do not hesitate to get back to me and I will be happy to help. All the best