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need advice re damaged car

(5 Posts)
nightowlmostly Mon 20-Jun-11 21:58:44

This is a bit of a long story, so will try to keep it brief!

Four weeks ago, I left my car with a valet company operating out of the carpark we use for work. They crashed it. The owner assured me he would have it fixed, and gave me money for a hire car for a week while it was being repaired. Before allowing him to take the car I called my insurance company to check whether or not this would be ok with them, and not invalidate my insurance. They said it was ok to let him fix it.

So, a week later I get the car back, the tracking not done, steering wheel off centre. There is a letter in the car telling me that it needs doing but the car is safe to drive and if I bring it back the next week he will get it fixed. I didn't want to wait a week, so took it to my garage with the intention of getting it fixed myself and presenting the valet owner with the bill.

Cue a call from the garage tellling me there is all sorts of problems with the work that has been done, they can't fix they tracking because there are so many issues with the car, the subframe is bent, as is the steering column, and it will cost at least £1000 to fix, and £250 for the paintwork they haven't done properly. They showed me under the bonnet and it is clear that they have patched it up rather than replace any damaged parts.

I called the valet owner to tell him, he texted and said to let him know how much and he would pay, but that was before he knew how much it would be. Today I went to the valet company's office and spoke to the guy there, managed to get a copy of the invoice for the work carried out, so I have proof that they did work on it.

The owner himself is being ominously quiet, won't return my calls. So finally, my question is, if he continues to ignore me, what should I do? My insurance company are being a bit difficult so I think it may come down to pursuing him privately with a solicitor, but I don't want to pay out to get it fixed in case he won't pay and I can't make him.

Sorry this is so long, but it's an ongoing drama. If anyone can give me any advice on the best course of action to take I'd really appreciate it, thank you!

Collaborate Mon 20-Jun-11 23:31:32

Small claims court. Did you have legal expenses with your policy?

nightowlmostly Tue 21-Jun-11 00:47:08

Not sure, I have to call them and see if I can use their legal dept to sue the guy. Hopefully it won't come to that, but I think I have a good case, witnesses, paperwork saying he tried to fix it, my garage will testify the work done was done badly. Do you think I have a case? I'm assuming you have expertise, but appreciate your input even if you don't! Thanks for replying!

Collaborate Tue 21-Jun-11 06:55:52

You are entitled to have your car properly repaired. You should be reimbursed the cost. Just don't muck around. Get it issued as soon as you can, but give them 14 days to pay up first.

nightowlmostly Tue 21-Jun-11 13:49:21

What do you mean by 'get it issued'? Sorry, am not clear about what I need to do first really! I was thinking to get a lawyer to send a letter, but don't know whether to get the repair done first or not.

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