Had a guy start the job, only has it taken apart and is now disputing what is owed for work done to this point.
What's the time frame for this type of repair? on 1990 Honda Prelude
As a California resident you have excellent consumer protections on your side in these and many other situations. Here is the official info from the Bureau of Automotive Repair: http://www.autorepair.ca.gov/80_BARResources/07_AutoRepair/writeAutoRepDlr.pdf
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First of all you should never pay por any work partially done. If the work is done in your garage or at a shop you never pay for repairs till the job is complete. The person doing the work will take the money and run than the next mechanic will charge you more to fix the last mechanics mistakes.