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You have no legal obligation to pay this bill. This shop is in breach of contracts
and you should raise the stakes on them. They're the experts and you had the right to rely upon their estimate; if there is a mistake, it's the shop who should bear the burden of that mistake. What you want to do is raise the stakes on them so that they realize that not complying with your demands is going to cost them far more in the end than simply releasing your car to you for the promised price. You should send them a certified, return receipt requested letter detailing the history and demanding they release the car for the promised price immediately. Inform them that if your demand is not timely complied with, you will have no choice but to file a suit against him for your damages. BUT, be sure to specifically mention that you will be filing this claim not only as a breach of contract case, but also as deceptive trade practice
and fraud actions, which will entitle you not only to your damages (including the value of rental car for the period it took to complete this job beyond the original estimate), but also an additional amount equal to multiple times your actual damages as punitive damages
. That should provide plenty of incentive to comply with your demands; but, if it does not, file your suit. Even if you have to file the suit, that's likely all you will need do. In my experience, they will settle this without a hearing rather than risk punitive damages and the fraud and/or deceptive trade practice judgments being on the record.
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