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Repair and Storage Liens Act (RSLA) –Barred from further legal action



The following information is prepared for information purposes only. It is not intended to express a legal opinion. In all cases where you require a legal opinion, it is recommended that you contact a lawyer. Should you have any questions or comments relating to this material, please contact Peter Balsdon at your convenience.

A motor vehicle repairer performed substantial repair work on a vehicle which invoice totaled $5,000.00. The repairer, who knows the vehicle owner, agreed to release the vehicle to the owner based on a promise to pay but did assure that all the necessary documents, including the signed acknowledgement of indebtedness, were signed prior to releasing the vehicle.

The vehicle is most likely worth no more than $2,000.00. If payment is not made and the repairer must arrange for the seizure and sale of the vehicle in accordance with the provisions of the RSLA, can the repairer then sue the vehicle owner for the shortfall in that the vehicle is not valued anywhere near the amount of the indebtedness? The RSLA s.18, states that the repairer shall be deemed to have sold the vehicle in full satisfaction of the amount owing, therefore you are not able to sue for any shortfall.