Ontario’s new Consumer Protection Act is expected to mandate important changes in the way repair operations conduct their business. The act, which will become law on July 30, 2005 will require, for example, that any aftermarket parts must be identified in writing to the customer. Shops will be required to provide a written estimate prior to performing the work, though they may charge a reasonable fee for giving an estimate. Under the current Motor Vehicle Repair Act, estimates are only required if the customer asked for one. Under the new law, if a written estimate is not given, the shop cannot change for the repairs. An exception exists where a shop may charge for repairs without first providing an estimate if: -The shop offers to give an estimate and the customer turns down the offer. -The customer specifically authorizes a maximum amount they are willing to pay and the final cost does not exceed that amount. Customers must be told in advance if there is a fee for the estimate, and if the repair is carried out, no estimate fee may be charged under normal circumstances. As with the current law, the cost of repairs may not exceed the estimate by more than 10% unless prior authority has been obtained and properly noted. Warranty of repairs remains 3 months or 5,000 km on new or reconditioned parts. All new non-original equipment manufacturers parts installed must be noted. There is no automatic warranty on used parts. Shops must feature signs that explain their pricing levels and policies and how they calculate labour rates. Estimate information must also be posted.