The California Bureau of Automotive Repair as made a small change to the California Code of Regulations Section 3356 invoice requirements. The Written Estimate Law (Business and Professions Code Section 9884.9) has always required that Labor and "Parts" be listed on the estimate, but it was not stated that each part to be used had to be listed separately. The Regulations written by the BAR provide the details as to how the law is to be complied with but until now was no clear on this issue.
Effective March 4, the Regulations will require that the work order separately list each part. "The changes clairify the requirement to list and describe labor separately from parts and to include the individual price for labor on each job and for each part listed and described in an invoice" according to a BAR memo dated February 9, 2007, to all Automotive Repair Dealer.
The new wording of the California Code Of Regulations, Section 3356 and the California Business & Professions Code concerning written estimates is reproduced below.
California Code of Regulations (CCR) Section 3356. Invoice Requirements.
(a) All invoices for service and repair work performed, and parts supplied, as provided for in Section 9884.8 of the Business and Professions Code, shall comply with the following:
(1) The invoice shall show the automotive repair dealer's registration number and the corresponding business name and address as shown in the Bureau's records. If the automotive repair dealer's telephone number is shown, it shall comply with the requirements of subsection (b) of Section 3371 of this chapter. (2) The invoice shall separately list, describe and identify all of the following: (A) All service and repair work performed, including all diagnostic and warranty work, and the price for each described service and repair.
(B) Each part supplied, in such a manner that the customer can understand what was purchased, and the price for each described part. The description of each part shall state whether the part was new, used, reconditioned, rebuilt, or an OEM crash part, or a non-OEM aftermarket crash part.
(C) The subtotal price for all service and repair work performed. (D) The subtotal price for all parts supplied, not including sales tax. (E) The applicable sales tax, if any.
(b) If a customer is to be charged for a part, that part shall be specifically listed as an item in the invoice, as provided in subparagraph (B) of paragraph (2) of subsection (a) above. If that-item is not listed in the invoice, it shall not be regarded as a part, and a separate charge may not be made for it.
(c) Separate billing in an invoice for items generically noted as shop supplies, miscellaneous parts, or the like, is prohibited.
(d) The automotive repair dealer shall give the customer a legible copy of the invoice and shall retain a legible copy as part of the automotive repair dealer's records pursuant to Section 9884.11 of the Business and Professions Code and Section 3358 of this article.
The law which requires that a written estimate be given is California Business and Professions Code Section 9884.9, it reads:
§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 i