Code Section Group

Business and Professions Code - BPC

DIVISION 3. PROFESSIONS AND VOCATIONS GENERALLY [5000 - 9998.11]

  ( Heading of Division 3 added by Stats. 1939, Ch. 30. )

CHAPTER 20.3. Automotive Repair [9880 - 9889.68]

  ( Chapter 20.3 added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578. )

ARTICLE 3. Registration Procedure [9884 - 9884.22]
  ( Article 3 added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578. )

9884.
  

(a) An automotive repair dealer shall pay the fee required by this chapter for each place of business operated by the dealer in this state and shall register with the director upon forms prescribed by the director. The forms shall contain sufficient information to identify the automotive repair dealer, including name, address of each location, a statement by the dealer that each location is in an area that, pursuant to local zoning ordinances, permits the operation of a facility for the repair of motor vehicles, the dealer’s retail seller’s permit number, if a permit is required under the Sales and Use Tax Law (Part 1 (commencing with Section 6001), Division 2, Revenue and Taxation Code), and other identifying data that are prescribed by the director. If the business is to be carried on under a fictitious name, the fictitious name shall be stated. To the extent prescribed by the director, an automotive repair dealer shall identify the owners, directors, officers, partners, members, trustees, managers, and any other persons who directly or indirectly control or conduct the business. The forms shall include a statement signed by the dealer under penalty of perjury that the information provided is true.

(b) A state agency is not authorized or required by this section to enforce a city, county, regional, air pollution control district, or air quality management district rule or regulation regarding the site or operation of a facility that repairs motor vehicles.

(Amended by Stats. 1999, Ch. 983, Sec. 11. Effective January 1, 2000.)

9884.1.
  

Any business maintaining more than one automotive repair facility shall be permitted to file a single application annually, which along with the other information required by this article, clearly indicates the location of, and the individual in charge of, each facility. In that case, fees shall be paid for each location.

(Amended by Stats. 1992, Ch. 674, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1993.)

9884.2.
  

Upon receipt of the form properly filled out and receipt of the required fee, the director shall issue the registration and send a proof of issuance to the automotive repair dealer. The director shall by regulation prescribe conditions that he or she determines are necessary to ensure future compliance with this chapter, upon which a person, whose registration has previously been revoked or has previously been denied or who has committed acts prohibited by Section 9884.7 while an automotive repair dealer or mechanic or while an employee, partner, officer or member of an automotive repair dealer, may have his or her registration issued.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, Ch. 307, Sec. 95. (SB 821) Effective January 1, 2010.)

9884.3.
  

Every registration shall cease to be valid one year from the last day of the month in which registration was issued unless the automotive repair dealer has paid the renewal fee required by this chapter.

(Amended by Stats. 1998, Ch. 970, Sec. 206. Effective January 1, 1999.)

9884.4.
  

A registration shall cease to be valid when the director finds that any of the information provided by the form specified in Section 9884, which the director by regulation deems material, ceases to be current.

(Added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578.)

9884.5.
  

A registration that is not renewed within three years following its expiration shall not be renewed, restored, or reinstated thereafter, and the delinquent registration shall be canceled immediately upon expiration of the three-year period.

An automotive repair dealer whose registration has been canceled by operation of this section shall obtain a new registration only if he or she again meets the requirements set forth in this chapter relating to registration, is not subject to denial under Section 480, and pays the applicable fees.

An expired registration may be renewed at any time within three years after its expiration upon the filing of an application for renewal on a form prescribed by the bureau and the payment of all accrued renewal and delinquency fees. Renewal under this section shall be effective on the date on which the application is filed and all renewal and delinquency fees are paid. If so renewed, the registration shall continue in effect through the expiration date of the current registration year as provided in Section 9884.3, at which time the registration shall be subject to renewal.

(Added by Stats. 1998, Ch. 970, Sec. 206.5. Effective January 1, 1999.)

9884.6.
  

(a) It is unlawful for any person to be an automotive repair dealer unless that person has registered in accordance with this chapter and unless that registration is currently valid.

(b) A person who, for compensation, adjusts, installs, or tests retrofit systems for purposes of Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 44200) of Part 5 of Division 26 of the Health and Safety Code is an automotive repair dealer for purposes of this chapter.

(Amended by Stats. 1985, Ch. 1138, Sec. 1.)

9884.7.
  

(a) The director, where the automotive repair dealer cannot show there was a bona fide error, may deny, suspend, revoke, or place on probation the registration of an automotive repair dealer for any of the following acts or omissions related to the conduct of the business of the automotive repair dealer, which are done by the automotive repair dealer or any automotive technician, employee, partner, officer, or member of the automotive repair dealer.

(1) Making or authorizing in any manner or by any means whatever any statement written or oral which is untrue or misleading, and which is known, or which by the exercise of reasonable care should be known, to be untrue or misleading.

(2) Causing or allowing a customer to sign any work order that does not state the repairs requested by the customer or the automobile’s odometer reading at the time of repair.

(3) Failing or refusing to give to a customer a copy of any document requiring his or her signature, as soon as the customer signs the document.

(4) Any other conduct that constitutes fraud.

(5) Conduct constituting gross negligence.

(6) Failure in any material respect to comply with the provisions of this chapter or regulations adopted pursuant to it.

(7) Any willful departure from or disregard of accepted trade standards for good and workmanlike repair in any material respect, which is prejudicial to another without consent of the owner or his or her duly authorized representative.

(8) Making false promises of a character likely to influence, persuade, or induce a customer to authorize the repair, service, or maintenance of automobiles.

(9) Having repair work done by someone other than the dealer or his or her employees without the knowledge or consent of the customer unless the dealer can demonstrate that the customer could not reasonably have been notified.

(10) Conviction of a violation of Section 551 of the Penal Code.

Upon denying a registration, the director shall notify the applicant thereof, in writing, by personal service or mail addressed to the address of the applicant set forth in the application, and the applicant shall be given a hearing under Section 9884.12 if, within 30 days thereafter, he or she files with the bureau a written request for hearing, otherwise the denial is deemed affirmed.

(b) Except as provided for in subdivision (c), if an automotive repair dealer operates more than one place of business in this state, the director pursuant to subdivision (a) shall only suspend, revoke, or place on probation the registration of the specific place of business which has violated any of the provisions of this chapter. This violation, or action by the director, shall not affect in any manner the right of the automotive repair dealer to operate his or her other places of business.

(c) Notwithstanding subdivision (b), the director may suspend, revoke, or place on probation the registration for all places of business operated in this state by an automotive repair dealer upon a finding that the automotive repair dealer has, or is, engaged in a course of repeated and willful violations of this chapter, or regulations adopted pursuant to it.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, Ch. 307, Sec. 96. (SB 821) Effective January 1, 2010.)

9884.76.
  

Notwithstanding Section 9889.20, an automotive repair dealer who prepares a written estimate for repairs pursuant to Section 9884.9 that includes replacement of a deployed airbag that is part of an inflatable restraint system, and who fails to restore the airbag that is part of an inflatable restraint system to its original operating condition, where the customer has paid for the replacement of the deployed airbag as provided in the estimate, is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of five thousand dollars ($5,000) or by imprisonment in a county jail for one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment.

(Added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 430, Sec. 1. (SB 869) Effective January 1, 2012.)

9884.8.
  

All work done by an automotive repair dealer, including all warranty work, shall be recorded on an invoice and shall describe all service work done and parts supplied. Service work and parts shall be listed separately on the invoice, which shall also state separately the subtotal prices for service work and for parts, not including sales tax, and shall state separately the sales tax, if any, applicable to each. If any used, rebuilt, or reconditioned parts are supplied, the invoice shall clearly state that fact. If a part of a component system is composed of new and used, rebuilt or reconditioned parts, that invoice shall clearly state that fact. The invoice shall include a statement indicating whether any crash parts are original equipment manufacturer crash parts or nonoriginal equipment manufacturer aftermarket crash parts. One copy of the invoice shall be given to the customer and one copy shall be retained by the automotive repair dealer.

(Amended by Stats. 2000, Ch. 336, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2001.)

9884.9.
  

(a) The automotive repair dealer shall give to the customer a written estimated price for labor and parts necessary for a specific job. No work shall be done and no charges shall accrue before authorization to proceed is obtained from the customer. No charge shall be made for work done or parts supplied in excess of the estimated price without the oral or written consent of the customer that shall be obtained at some time after it is determined that the estimated price is insufficient and before the work not estimated is done or the parts not estimated are supplied. Written consent or authorization for an increase in the original estimated price may be provided by electronic mail or facsimile transmission from the customer. The bureau may specify in regulation the procedures to be followed by an automotive repair dealer if an authorization or consent for an increase in the original estimated price is provided by electronic mail or facsimile transmission. If that consent is oral, the dealer shall make a notation on the work order of the date, time, name of person authorizing the additional repairs, and telephone number called, if any, together with a specification of the additional parts and labor and the total additional cost, and shall do either of the following:

(1) Make a notation on the invoice of the same facts set forth in the notation on the work order.

(2) Upon completion of the repairs, obtain the customer’s signature or initials to an acknowledgment of notice and consent, if there is an oral consent of the customer to additional repairs, in the following language:

“I acknowledge notice and oral approval of an increase in the original estimated price.

_____

_____

(signature or initials)”

Nothing in this section shall be construed as requiring an automotive repair dealer to give a written estimated price if the dealer does not agree to perform the requested repair.

(b) The automotive repair dealer shall include with the written estimated price a statement of any automotive repair service that, if required to be done, will be done by someone other than the dealer or his or her employees. No service shall be done by other than the dealer or his or her employees without the consent of the customer, unless the customer cannot reasonably be notified. The dealer shall be responsible, in any case, for any service in the same manner as if the dealer or his or her employees had done the service.

(c) In addition to subdivisions (a) and (b), an automotive repair dealer, when doing auto body or collision repairs, shall provide an itemized written estimate for all parts and labor to the customer. The estimate shall describe labor and parts separately and shall identify each part, indicating whether the replacement part is new, used, rebuilt, or reconditioned. Each crash part shall be identified on the written estimate and the written estimate shall indicate whether the crash part is an original equipment manufacturer crash part or a nonoriginal equipment manufacturer aftermarket crash part.

(d) A customer may designate another person to authorize work or parts supplied in excess of the estimated price, if the designation is made in writing at the time that the initial authorization to proceed is signed by the customer. The bureau may specify in regulation the form and content of a designation and the procedures to be followed by the automotive repair dealer in recording the designation. For the purposes of this section, a designee shall not be the automotive repair dealer providing repair services or an insurer involved in a claim that includes the motor vehicle being repaired, or an employee or agent or a person acting on behalf of the dealer or insurer.

(Amended by Stats. 2004, Ch. 874, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2005.)

9884.10.
  

Upon request of the customer at the time the work order is taken, the automotive repair dealer shall return replaced parts to the customer at the time of the completion of the work excepting such parts as may be exempt because of size, weight, or other similar factors from this requirement by regulations of the department and excepting such parts as the automotive repair dealer is required to return to the manufacturer or distributor under a warranty arrangement. If such parts must be returned to the manufacturer or distributor, the dealer at the time the work order is taken shall offer to show, and upon acceptance of such offer or request shall show, such parts to the customer upon completion of the work, except that the dealer shall not be required to show a replaced part when no charge is being made for the replacement part.

(Added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578.)

9884.11.
  

Each automotive repair dealer shall maintain any records that are required by regulations adopted to carry out this chapter. Those records shall be open for reasonable inspection by the chief or other law enforcement officials. All of those records shall be maintained for at least three years.

(Amended by Stats. 1992, Ch. 674, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 1993.)

9884.12.
  

All proceedings to deny, suspend, revoke, or place on probation a registration shall be conducted pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, Ch. 307, Sec. 97. (SB 821) Effective January 1, 2010.)

9884.13.
  

The expiration of a valid registration shall not deprive the director or chief of jurisdiction to proceed with any investigation or disciplinary proceeding against an automotive repair dealer or to render a decision invalidating a registration temporarily or permanently.

(Added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578.)

9884.14.
  

The superior court in and for the county wherein any person carries on, or attempts to carry on, a business as an automotive repair dealer or as a mechanic in violation of the provisions of this chapter, or any regulation made pursuant to this chapter, shall, on application of the director or the chief, issue an injunction or other appropriate order restraining such conduct. This section shall be cumulative to and shall not prohibit the enforcement of any other law.

The proceedings under this section shall be governed by Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 525) of Title 7 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, except that the director or chief shall not be required to allege facts necessary to show or tending to show lack of an adequate remedy at law or irreparable injury.

(Amended by Stats. 1982, Ch. 517, Sec. 39.)

9884.15.
  

The director may file charges with the district attorney or city attorney against any automotive repair dealer who violates the provisions of this chapter or any regulation made pursuant to this chapter.

(Added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578.)

9884.16.
  

No person required to have a valid registration under the provisions of this chapter shall have the benefit of any lien for labor or materials or the right to sue on a contract for motor vehicle repairs done by him unless he has such a valid registration.

(Added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578.)

9884.17.
  

The bureau shall design and approve of a sign which shall be placed in all automotive repair dealer locations in a place and manner conspicuous to the public. That sign shall give notice that inquiries concerning service may be made to the bureau and shall contain the telephone number and Internet Web site address of the bureau. The sign shall also give notice that the customer is entitled to a return of replaced parts upon his or her request therefor at the time the work order is taken.

(Amended by Stats. 2004, Ch. 572, Sec. 3. Effective January 1, 2005.)

9884.18.
  

Nothing in the provisions of this chapter shall prohibit the bringing of a civil action against an automotive repair dealer by an individual.

(Added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578.)

9884.19.
  

The bureau may adopt, amend or repeal in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 11371), Part 1, Division 3, Title 2 of the Government Code such regulations as may be reasonably necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter in the protection of the public from fraudulent or misleading advertising by an automotive repair dealer, including formulation of definitions, to the extent feasible, of the terms “fraud,” “guarantee,” and words of like import, and of “negligence,” and guidelines for the suspension and revocation of licenses. The bureau shall distribute to each registered repair dealer copies of this chapter and of the regulations adopted pursuant to this chapter.

(Added by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1578.)

9884.20.
  

All accusations against automotive repair dealers shall be filed within three years after the performance of the act or omission alleged as the ground for disciplinary action, except that with respect to an accusation alleging fraud or misrepresentation as a ground for disciplinary action, the accusation may be filed within two years after the discovery, by the bureau, of the alleged facts constituting the fraud or misrepresentation.

(Added by Stats. 2007, Ch. 354, Sec. 65. Effective January 1, 2008.)

9884.21.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the director may, in his or her sole discretion, issue a probationary registration to an applicant subject to terms and conditions deemed appropriate by the director, including, but not limited to, the following:

(1) Continuing medical, psychiatric, or psychological treatment.

(2) Ongoing participation in a specified rehabilitation program.

(3) Abstention from the use of alcohol or drugs.

(4) Compliance with all provisions of this chapter.

(b) (1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, and for purposes of this section, when deciding whether to issue a probationary registration, the director shall request that an applicant with a dismissed conviction provide proof of that dismissal and shall give special consideration to applicants whose convictions have been dismissed pursuant to Section 1203.4 or 1203.4a of the Penal Code.

(2) The director shall also take into account and consider any other reasonable documents or individual character references provided by the applicant that may serve as evidence of rehabilitation as deemed appropriate by the director.

(c) The director may modify or terminate the terms and conditions imposed on the probationary registration upon receipt of a petition from the applicant or registrant.

(d) For purposes of issuing a probationary registration to qualified new applicants, the director shall develop standard terms of probation that shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

(1) A three-year limit on the individual probationary registration.

(2) A process to obtain a standard registration for applicants who were issued a probationary registration.

(3) Supervision requirements.

(4) Compliance and quarterly reporting requirements.

(Added by Stats. 2008, Ch. 675, Sec. 13. Effective January 1, 2009.)

9884.22.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the director may revoke, suspend, or deny at any time any registration required by this article on any of the grounds for disciplinary action provided in this article. The proceedings under this article shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, and the director shall have all the powers granted therein.

(b) The director may deny a registration to an applicant on any of the grounds specified in Section 480.

(c) In addition to the requirements provided in Sections 485 and 486, upon denial of an application for registration to an applicant, the director shall provide a statement of reasons for the denial that does the following:

(1) Evaluates evidence of rehabilitation submitted by the applicant, if any.

(2) Provides the director’s criteria relating to rehabilitation, formulated pursuant to Section 482, that takes into account the age and severity of the offense, and the evidence relating to participation in treatment or other rehabilitation programs.

(3) If the director’s decision was based on the applicant’s prior criminal conviction, justifies the director’s denial of a registration and conveys the reasons why the prior criminal conviction is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties of a registered automotive repair dealer.

(d) Commencing July 1, 2009, all of the following shall apply:

(1) If the denial of a registration is due at least in part to the applicant’s state or federal criminal history record, the director shall, in addition to the information provided pursuant to paragraph (3) of subdivision (c), provide to the applicant a copy of his or her criminal history record if the applicant makes a written request to the director for a copy, specifying an address to which it is to be sent.

(A) The state or federal criminal history record shall not be modified or altered from its form or content as provided by the Department of Justice.

(B) The criminal history record shall be provided in such a manner as to protect the confidentiality and privacy of the applicant’s criminal history record and the criminal history record shall not be made available by the director to any employer.

(C) The director shall retain a copy of the applicant’s written request and a copy of the response sent to the applicant, which shall include the date and the address to which the response was sent.

(2) The director shall make that information available upon request by the Department of Justice or the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

(e) Notwithstanding Section 487, the director shall conduct a hearing of a registration denial within 90 days of receiving an applicant’s request for a hearing. For all other hearing requests, the director shall determine when the hearing shall be conducted.

(Added by Stats. 2008, Ch. 675, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 2009.)

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