Mass. Right to Repair Agreement – Nationwide?
A compromise has finally been reached in the right to repair law controversy in the state of Massachusetts. Will this agreement spread to other states?
For years, the Right to Repair coalition has been pressing auto manufactures to release important repair information to independent repair shops, just not the dealerships. Manufactures have consisently countered that by doing so it would make it easier for people to make cheap repair parts.
The issue has grown to the point where a law was introduced forcing manufactures to turn over the information. The bill’s fate was to be decided in the fall during a ballot election. It seems that manufactures relented just in time, so that ballot issue is for naught.
According to a Detroit News story, “The resulting compromise legally binds automakers to continue making repair information available to the aftermarket while preserving the ability of automakers and their franchised dealers to utilize proprietary systems in warranty and recall work.”
“We believe that this bill ensures an acceptable agreement that will safeguard all of the stakeholders. It will preserve choice for Massachusetts vehicle owners, protect manufacturers’ intellectual property, preserve the integrity of the role of the dealer in the repair process and continue innovation in motor vehicle diagnostics,” said the letter from two major automaker trade associations, as well as the Right to Repair Coalition and the Massacusetts State Auto Dealers Association. “It also protects Massachusetts small independent repair businesses and community dealers.”
As we reported in an earlier story, the Right to Repair coalition has said the independent repair shops could do more warranty work and at times save consumers money by giving them additional choices in service shops. This could help truck owners who pay more for repairs when using a dealer. However, we still believe that dealers have a leg up on independent shops due to additional training and repairing the same types of vehicles.
It remains to be seen if other states will work on this legislation and the agreement will spread to every state in the U.S.
What do you think? If the independent repair shops finally get the same information that dealers do, will you consider using them more?
Filed Under: Auto News