Right to Repair Law: coming to Vermont?

Industry advocates say Right to Repair legislation protects car owner rights, at least so far in where and how they'd like to have their vehicles serviced-either a new car dealer or an independent service facility.

In short, Right to Repair ensures that the individual buying a new car-and not the auto company-makes the final decision where to repair it.

NETSA notes that the Right to Repair movement is a bipartisan effort. Democrat, Republican and independents-supporters line up on all sides of the political aisle, a rare event in politics.

If a bill is passed in Massachusetts, a Right to Repair Law would require automakers to provide the same technical service data and special repair tools to independent auto and repair shops.

Also, the Right to Repair Coalition says, such legislation would not restrict drivers from choosing car dealerships if they like, but it does let the vehicle owner have a choice when deciding where to take the vehicle for repairs and what parts to use in maintaining the vehicle.

Supporters of the legislation in Massachusetts have already stated that many recent model cars can only be serviced and repaired at dealerships; thus, it severely limits freedom of price comparison shopping as well as where to choose a convenient garage.

Massachusetts' aftermarket industry employs 31,444 people employing approximately 0.9 percent of the state's total workforce; 5 million commercial and private vehicles are on the road in the Bay State. Annual aftermarket sales in the state in 2010 topped $6.2 billion.

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