General information for repair and body shops

Where can I find information about operating a repair or body shop in New York State?

The best source for information are the NYS DMV Motor Vehicle Repair Shop Regulations (CR-82).

How can I be sure a customer has authorized my repair or body shop to make repairs to their vehicle?

You must have authorization from the customer to make repairs. You can require your customer to

  • sign a repair order
  • provide a written work order
  • authorize the repair by telephone
    • you must record the time, the date, and the name of the person who authorized the repairs by phone

Can the amount of a final bill for a repair be more than the written estimate?

The final bill cannot exceed your written estimate without the consent of the customer. You can charge a reasonable fee to make an estimate.

What can I do if a customer leaves a vehicle for repairs, does not return, and I cannot contact the customer?

You can try to foreclose a Garagemen's Lien against the vehicle. For more information, read Instructions and Requirements for Filing New York State Garageman's Liens (MV-901C).

When can I begin to request payment for the storage of a vehicle?

You can request payment for storage after you notify the customer by mail at the last known address.