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Monday, 02 July 2007 10:17

BAR amends invoice requirements in regards to lump-sum bills, ensures itemized invoices

    It is a common practice for many Automotive Repair Dealers (ARDs) to list individual prices for each separate part replaced and each repair/service performed on the invoice. While this has been the industry’s standard of practice for many years, a few ARDs expect customers to pay lump-sum bills without question, and the applicable regulation has been subject to differing interpretations.
    To address this issue and ensure all invoices are itemized, BAR has amended section 3356 of the California Code of Regulations. The amendment specifically requires that the individual price(s) be included for each repair/service listed on an invoice, which was the original intent of the regulation.
    The amendments, which became effective March 4, 2007, also recognize the prevailing industry standard for preparing invoices. All of the previous requirements of section 3356 have been retained with only a few minor grammatical and editorial changes.
    In summary, in addition to including the ARD’s registration number, business name, and address as shown by BAR’s records, all invoices must also include identification, description, and a separate listing for the following:
    • All service and repair work performed, including all diagnostic and warranty work, and the price for each described service and repair;
    • Each part supplied, in a manner the customer can understand, the price for the part, and whether it was new, used, reconditioned, rebuilt, or an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) crash part or non-OEM aftermarket crash part;
    • The subtotal price for all service and repair work performed;
    • The subtotal price for all parts supplied, not including sales tax; and
    • The applicable sales tax, if any.
    As before, if a customer is charged for a part, it must be listed as an item in the invoice. Separate billing on an invoice for items generically noted as shop supplies, miscellaneous parts, or the like, is prohibited. Finally, the ARD must give the customer a legible copy of the invoice and retain a legible copy as part of his or her records.