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The Garage Keepers’ Act and the Rights of the Mechanic

The Garage Keepers Act (“the Act”) is legislation that allows a mechanic or shopkeeper to hold any vehicle they have worked on as security for unpaid accounts. A “Garage Keeper” is a person who keeps a place of business for the housing, storage or repair of a motor vehicle or farm vehicle and who receives compensation for that housing, storage or repair.

A Garage Keeper is entitled to the seizure of a motor vehicle if possession has been maintained from the time that the repairs were done, and if payment for the service remains outstanding. Once a vehicle has been seized it may be left with the Garage Keeper until all debt has been paid by the debtor. Once payment in full has been received, the Garage Keeper is obligated to return the vehicle to the debtor.

In the event that a debtor does not provide full payment of the work done, the Garage Keeper is entitled to commence sale proceedings of the vehicle to satisfy the debt. This can be done 60 days after notice is given to the owner. In the case where there is a secured interest, 2 weeks written notice of the intended sale must be provided to anyone who has a registered interest in the Personal Property Registry under the serial number of the motor vehicle. The sale would then discharge any registered security interest that a party may have had in the motor vehicle.

Notice: The articles on our website are provided for general information purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice or opinion. They reflect the current state of the law as at the date of posting on the website, and are subject to change without notice. If you require legal advice or opinion, we would be pleased to provide you with our assistance on any of the issues raised in these articles.