Can You File a Lawsuit Against a Negligent Mechanic?
When your car breaks down or has something wrong with it, you trust that the mechanic you bring it to will fix it as you agreed. You’re relying on their skill and attention to fix the problem and get your car back to running normally. You’re also relying on their skills to keep you safe when you drive your vehicle again.
If they are negligent in any way while fixing your car, they could make a mistake and not fully repair what you need them to. This might seem like a small misstep, but even the smallest mistake in auto repair can lead to your car malfunctioning and cause an accident. When your mechanic is negligent and it leads to you getting into a collision, you’ll want to know if you can file a lawsuit against them. Let’s take a look at your options.
Proving Your Mechanic Was Negligent
The key to knowing whether or not you can file a lawsuit against your car mechanic is whether or not you can prove that they were negligent. The main way that you can prove this is through documentation of what was wrong with your car, what your mechanic was supposed to fix, how much you paid, and the results of their work after the fact.
You should keep all of your bills, written requests, warranties, and any other information or documents that show what you needed fixed. Pictures of your car and its parts before and after the work, and keeping the old parts to compare to the new parts can be evidence of their bad work. It can also help to get the opinion of another mechanic to give a statement about how it should have been properly fixed.
With all of this information, you should be able to prove the four important parts of negligence that must be present for the faulty mechanic to be held accountable. Those four elements are:
- The mechanic owed you a duty of care when repairing your vehicle, meaning they should have been competent and done their best.
- They breached that duty of care by acting negligently or recklessly while completing work on your car.
- That breach directly caused you to get into an accident.
- That accident caused you injuries and other damages.
When you’ve been in a car accident that was caused by a mechanic’s negligence, it can be complex and hard to prove. That’s why you could use the help of a car accident lawyer. An experienced attorney will be able to work with you and help you prove they were negligent and directly caused your injuries and other damages.
Rights for Illinois Consumers
As a consumer, it’s important for you to know the rights that you have when you take your vehicle to be repaired by a mechanic in Illinois. Our state has the Automotive Repair Act that protects consumers from dishonest mechanics. Here are some of the rights that you have to keep mechanics from unlawful practices and to ensure you can take action against them if they commit an unlawful act.
You are entitled to:
- A written estimate for your auto repairs and their costs.
- A detailed invoice of parts and work done.
- Having your replaced parts returned to you if you request them at the time of work being done.
- A statement on your invoice about whether or not your new parts have a warranty for 90 days or 3,000 miles.
- Inspecting your vehicle and its repairs before paying for the services.
- Being able to make a statement in writing about anything you see wrong at the time of the inspection.
The Automotive Repair Act of Illinois includes many more rights that consumers have when they are getting their vehicle repaired, these are just the main ones that you should know. Basically, you have the right to know what is being done to your car and ensuring that it’s being done the right way.
If a mechanic is negligent and doesn’t follow these laws, or if they make a mistake that leads to an accident for you, then you could file a lawsuit against them for their negligence.
You Can Trust Your Representation from Prince Law Firm
When you’ve been in an accident, it can be confusing figuring out exactly what caused it. If you recently had your car worked on, it’s possible that your mechanic was negligent and that’s what led to your collision. When you have a Marion, IL car accident lawyer on your side, you can get to the bottom of who caused your wreck, and if a negligent mechanic is responsible.
At Prince Law Firm, we’re dedicated to getting justice for our clients. We’ll research all avenues to determine exactly who is liable for what happened. Reach out to us today so that we can get started with a free consultation.