Do I Have to Pay for Repairs Done to My Car if They Failed to Charge Me When I Picked It Up?

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“I had repair work performed on my vehicle. I received a phone call from the service agent stating additional work would cost $900.00 dollars. I went to pick up my car and pay for the services provided. The invoice stated I owed $416.00 dollars only. I inquired about the other repairs that were performed and the cost. I was told by the cashier there was nothing on my invoice about any additonal costs. I paid the amount on the invoice and left. I received a phone call from the repair shop stating I still have an outstanding balance for over $700.00. My question is do I have to pay them? I inquired if I was paying the right amount, they said “yes” and no other charges were written down. I live in Massachusetts.”

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To completely answer your question I would need to see whatever, if any, paperwork you signed with the repair shop when you brought the car in and when you picked it up. You should look at any language regarding their estimates. Assuming that there are no unusual provisions, however, you probably owe them the full amount of what they initially said it would cost you plus the $900, minus the $416.00. Since you didn’t give us the initial estimate amount, I’ll assume it was $216.

Here’s why: When they gave you the call about the additional $900 and you agreed to it you were entering into a valid oral contract. They would do the agreed upon work and in exchange you would pay them the agreed upon price. Since they did the work as promised you owe them for it. The fact that the cashier made a mistake doesn’t change the terms of the contact. It was just an error on the cashier’s part, which doesn’t relieve you of your responsibility to pay for the agreed upon work at the agreed upon price.

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Author: House Attorney

A house attorney has answered this question.