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Can I take my mechanic to a small claims court

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  • Can I take my mechanic to a small claims court

    In 2015 we bought a campervan, a Mercedes 208, we were living in Tenerife at the time and a few months later decided to move back to the UK. Instead of flying back we decided to take a gap year and drive back from Cadiz to the UK. Over the next 20 months we lived in the camper and drove up through Europe, twice around England and then over to Germany. We then received some bad news and had to return home and eventually ended up in Lytham St Annes (my partners home town) where we set about building ourselves a life in Lancashire.

    After almost 2 years on the road we decided to rent a property locally, as such we had the opportunity to carry out some work on the camper.
    Jimmy as he is known, is 39 years old and very sturdy and fairly reliable. As a treat before he became classed as a classic vehicle we decided to treat him to a 5 speed gearbox and upgrade the engine. He had just had his MOT and passed with flying colours, we had replaced quite a few components on our journey due to fair wear and tear and we embarked on finding a suitable mechanic to carry out the work. As luck would have it a guy in Blackpool only 5 miles away agreed to do it, he seemed a very experienced Mercedes mechanic.
    He quoted us 3 months to carry out the work and we were happy with that and gave him a 500 deposit to begin the upgrade.

    It is now Feb 2021 and we still have not had our camper back, he has carried out less than a weeks work in the last 40 months and now says he doesn't want it taking up any more room in his garage and we should arrange to have it collected.
    It is now in a sorry state and I doubt if it can be rescued, we gave it to him in a roadworthy condition and he allowed it to deteriorate. I have a wealth of texts and emails and would like to know where I stand.
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  • #2
    Hi there

    It is always possible to initiate a claim against a third party, but it is not always viable, and it is never certain one will win.

    With the brief details you have given I would suggest you have two basis on which to claim
    1.Breach of Contract as Engineer has failed to perform the contract
    The Consumer Rights Act 2015 Chapter 4 applies to contracts about services

    2. Breach of bailment The Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977
    Basically bailment laws govern the rights between owners of property given to a third party and those who receive possession of the property(bailee)
    This creates a number of responsibilities for the bailee, including one of taking reasonable care of the entrusted goods. The higher the value of the goods, the greater the standard of care is expected.

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