SACRAMENTO, CA --- An April 1 hearing will weigh the merits of a California Senate bill (SB 350) seeking to prohibit collision-repair shops from using non-OEM aftermarket crash parts in the repair of an insured consumer's vehicle unless the parts are "at least of like kind and quality to the part being replaced in terms of fit, function, and finish."
The California Senate Banking, Finance and Insurance Committee will hold the hearing. The bill, if passed, would expand the definition of an existing crime.
Existing California law already prohibits an insurer from requiring the use of non-OEM aftermarket crash parts in the repair of an insured consumer's vehicle, unless the consumer is advised in a written estimate before repairs are made that non-OEM aftermarket crash parts will be used. In addition, California law already makes it a misdemeanor for anyone to charge for installing or reinstalling any previously deployed air bag that's part of an inflatable restraint system, if the person knew the air bag had been previously deployed.
The new bill would also make it a misdemeanor for anyone to knowingly install or reinstall for compensation any previously damaged air bag that's a part of an inflatable restraint system. Further, the bill seeks to prohibit someone who knows that an airbag has been previously deployed or damaged to cause another person to fail to fully restore, arm and return the air bag to its original operating condition.
Each offense would carry a fine of $5,000.