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Our car has been at a dealership for 4.5 months waiting on…

Customer Question
Our car has been...

Our car has been at a dealership for 4.5 months waiting on an airbag inflator part. We were given a loaner car. A man without insurance hit the back of the loaner and we don't have uninsured motorist coverage. The dealership won't give us our car back till we pay $3600 for the damages. Can they legally hold our car?

Lawyer's Assistant: What state is this in? And how old is the car?

Texas

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you contacted the manufacturer?

Yes. They started a Customer Relations case. The corporate ofc doesn't require this payment but the dealer is requiring it.

Submitted: 11 months ago.Category: Legal
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Answered in 3 minutes by:
9/20/2017
Lawyer: Lucy, Esq., Attorney replied 11 months ago
Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 32,264
Experience: Lawyer
Verified

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.

You're considered a bailee in this situation, which means that you have an obligation to return the car in the same or better condition as it was in when you borrowed it. They legally can require you to pay for the cost of repairing the damage - although you can in turn sue the person who hit you. However, they cannot hold your vehicle ransom unless they can produce a signed contract where you agreed to give them a lien on the car. Ask them to show you where you said they can keep you car until you pay for damage to the loaner vehicle. If they can't, their recourse is to return your car (once you pay for any costs associated with the original repair), and sue you or the other driver for the cost of fixing their loaner.

If you have any questions or concerns about my response, please reply WITHOUT RATING. It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so I am paid for the time I spend answering questions. If you are on a mobile device, you may need to scroll to the right. There is no charge for follow-up questions. Thank you.

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Lawyer: Lucy, Esq., Attorney replied 10 months ago

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

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