You probably haven't given much thought to having your mechanic driving or keeping your car while it's being repaired. Many people assume that if something happens, the shop will have insurance to cover everything. However, it's not that simple. Many shops have a "hold harmless" clause in their paperwork or a sign in their shop reducing their liability. If an accident happens in the shop, or while the mechanic is driving your car, then it may be your insurance company that pays for damages, not the shop. Here are two examples where the mechanic may not be liable for damages to your car while in their possession.
Not at fault in an accident:
If the mechanic is test driving your car after a repair and they have an accident, then they would not be liable if it has been determined that it was caused by the other driver. Hopefully, though, they got the other driver's information so that you can go after them or their insurance to get your car repaired. If it was a hit and run or the mechanics failed to get a police report or other information, then you may be out of luck unless you have full coverage insurance. Even if the accident was the mechanic's fault, your liability insurance will likely cover the damage caused to the other car instead of the mechanic's insurance. However, your insurance company may opt to sue the shop to recover their loss. Plus, you will still be able to sue to get back any deductibles and other losses.
Damage by other customers and debris:
If you left your car at the shop and another customer comes along and hits it, then the shop will likely not be held liable. The same goes for hail damage, break ins or anything else that the mechanics didn't directly cause. However, in many states there is an exception for negligence. This means if the mechanic did something that made your car more susceptible to getting hit or being damaged, then they may be at fault. An example would be parking your car in a spot where they knew your car had a high likelihood of getting hit, leaving your car unlocked with the keys inside and not securing it behind a fence or gate, or leaving it under a tree with a bad tree branch. Again, it has to be assumed that they would reasonably know something would happen if they didn't take precautions.
When it comes to liability and negligence issues, such as whether or not a mechanic is at fault for damage to your vehicle while. in his or her care, it can be complicated. Contacting a law firm who practices law in this area can be of great help with sorting out the issues and giving you the best chance to recover any monetary compensation.
You walk into your favorite grocery store and right away, you slip and fall only to sprain your ankle. You can't perform your job because it requires standing on your feet all day, which means that you can't make any money to support your family while your ankle heals. There was no warning that the floors were wet after being cleaned in the store – so what do you do? It's probably a good idea to think about filing a personal injury lawsuit. Of course, anyone with experience with a personal injury case will tell you just how important it is to work with an attorney throughout the process. I'd like to share insight I've learned through three personal injury cases that I myself have had to go through in the past. I think the information on this website can help people like you, who need some personal injury guidance.