In November of 1998 my husband was in a single vehicle accident with his 1992 Corvette. We had previously purchased this car from CnV Corvettes in Scottsdale and asked them for a recommendation on who to fix the car. Their answer was Complete Paint and Body Center.
An estimate was written up by our insurance company (The Windsor Group) and Mario Jimenez the owner of Complete Paint agreed to this estimate.
In January of 1999 we received a call from Mr. Jimenez telling us that our car was complete and to come and pick it up. What we found was a total disaster. The car had been totally repainted but we found so many things wrong with it that we couldn't believe that a place that was in busines could even try to pass off this repair as professional. For example, the headlights on a vet rotate and become visible when they are turned on. When the headlights were turned on we could see where only a portion of the headlight covers had been painted, while the other part was still white, which was the primer color. This really showed up well because the car was painted red, its original color.
The front bumper was sagging down more on one side that the other and it was obviously noticeable. The reason for this was due to how they repaired it. They took a piece of scrap fiberglass and screwed it to the bumper and the wheel well to hold it in place.
The lines of the car were not straight. Meaning that the parts that were replaced were not properly aligned. The whole front end had to be fixed and replaced, which included the hood.
The hood showed several white spots, which was the primer beneath the red paint.
The lights under the hood did not work at all because of the wiring that had not been replaced. Mr. Jimenez told us that he would send it out to a mechanic to be fixed.
Mr. Jimenez, and my husband and I found approximately twenty spots where there were paint runs on the car.
After we found all of these imperfections we refused to take the car away and asked Mr. Jimenez to fix all of these problems. He agreed and told us that he would call us when the car was repaired to our specifications.
After a few weeks had passed we were called to come pick up the car. It is now mid February 1999. My husband and a friend of his went down to pick up the car. They inspected the car and the problems that were found earlier seemed to be taken care of.
Mr. Jimenez then took my husband and his friend into the office. He was very apologetic and insisted on giving my husband a check for $300.00 and told him that he would waive the $250.00 deductible. He expressed sincere concern and told him that he did not want any hard feelings because he took so long to repair the car. My husband accepted his generosity and shook his hand and left his place of business thinking everything was going to be all right.
Well after driving the car for a short time, things started going wrong with it. The hood started popping up while driving down the road, the lights were all going haywire, the car was bouncing all over the road, and when braking the car started pulling very badly.
We then started to become suspicious of what Complete Paint and Body Center had done to the car, so we proceeded to investigate. We contacted Mr. Jimenez and the Windsor Group and asked for the receipts of what had actually been done. We also asked for the old parts but we were refused on both requests. We also found out that Complete Paint and Body Center put a used hood on the car, but they were paid for a new one. After this discovery we then understood the reason for Mr. Jimenez's generosity.
On November 2, 1999 we took the car back to Complete Paint & Body Center per The Windsor Group instructions to be fixed correctly. We now insisted on them putting a new hood on the car and they have agreed reluctantly. They have told us that before they painted the car and fixed everything that was wrong we would have to repay the $250.00 deductible and the $300.00 gift that was given to us. We have agreed to his terms, but are leery of paying him before the car is actually painted. We feel that we have at least some leverage now, but if we pay them the total amount we will not have any recourse at all. In the meantime the car just sits at his shop needing to be finished.
We have contacted the Attorney General, the Department of Insurance, and the Better Business Bureau and they all have said that there is nothing that they can do. That he has not broken any laws, even though he frauded the insurance company. All we want is our car back in the same shape that it was in before the accident, and Mr. Jimenez does not feel that he is obligated to give us that. Before this accident the car was in near mint condition.
Do you think that you can help us with this business owner who does not think he has to fulfill his contract with us? Whatever help you can give us will be greatly appreciated.
Thank you for your time.