Massachusetts’ newest law: Right to Repair

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Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick has signed the state’s Right to Repair legislation.

The Right to Repair Coalition says it is the first-of-its-kind in the country, and will serve as a model for other states.

“The 120,000-plus consumers who signed the initiative petition and the 50,000 people who sent letters and postcards to their elected officials and thousands of local repairers who led the fight for the Right to Repair legislation all share in this victory today,” said Art Kinsman, spokesman for the Right to Repair campaign.

“The 40 member Massachusetts Right to Repair Coalition, comprised of local consumer groups, 2,000 independent repairers and 32,000 men and women who make their living in Massachusetts’ independent repair industry, stood strong against withering opposition from car manufacturers for the past three years. The Coalition’s efforts combined with overwhelming public support led to the big car makers withdrawing their opposition and paving the way for this big win for consumers today.”

The Right to Repair law requires the big auto manufacturers to sell the diagnostic and safety information needed to repair customers’ cars to the car owners and local car repair shops, expanding the choices consumers have. Currently, only some information is shared, often limiting consumers to only the car dealerships and making it difficult for neighborhood shops to fully repair customers’ vehicles. 

"This law is a big win for my customers and for small business people like me all over Massachusetts. This Right to Repair law will guarantee car owners have a choice in who fixes their car and gets rid of all the hoops independent shop owners like me have had to jump through to obtain diagnostic and repair information,” said Glenn Wilder, owner of Wilder Brothers American Car Care Center in Scituate, Mass., and a member of the Right to Repair coalition.

While the question will remain on the fall ballot, consumers and local repair shops will get all the benefits of Right to Repair from the new law signed by the Governor today.

The Massachusetts Right to Repair Coalition also recognized Rep. Garrett Bradley (D-Hingham) and Sen. John Hart (D-S. Boston) for their efforts in championing Right to Repair in the legislature.

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