The Legislature hereby finds and declares as a matter of public policy that the purposes of this article are to require disclosure to motor vehicle owners of information on certain replacement crash parts for repairs to their motor vehicles and to prevent both motor vehicle body shops and insurance companies from requiring the use of aftermarket crash parts for repair unless the motor vehicle owner consents in writing at the time of the repair.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meaning defined:
(a) "Aftermarket crash parts" means crash parts:
(1) Manufactured by a person other than the original manufacturer of the motor vehicle to be repaired; and
(2) For which the original manufacturer of the motor vehicle has not authorized the use of its name or trademark by the manufacturer of the crash parts;
(b) "Code" means the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended;
(c) "Crash parts" means exterior or interior sheet metal or fiberglass panels and parts that form the superstructure or body of a motor vehicle, including, but not limited to, fenders, bumpers, quarter panels, door panels, hoods, grills, fire walls, permanent roofs, wheel wells and front and rear lamp display panels;
(d) "Genuine crash parts" means crash parts:
(1) Manufactured by or for the original manufacturer of the motor vehicle to be repaired; and
(2) That are authorized to carry the name or trademark of the original manufacturer of the motor vehicle;
(e) "Motor vehicle" has the meaning stated in section one, article one, chapter seventeen-a of this code; and
(f) "Motor vehicle body shop" means any person or business establishment that removes, replaces, reconditions or repairs sheet metal or fiberglass motor vehicle crash parts.
For all motor vehicles requiring repair by motor vehicle body shops in the year of their manufacture or in the two succeeding years thereafter, motor vehicle body shops must use genuine crash parts sufficient to maintain the manufacturer's warranty for fit, finish, structural integrity, corrosion resistance, dent resistance and crash performance unless the motor vehicle owner consents in writing at the time of the repair to the use of aftermarket crash parts. No insurance company may require the use of aftermarket crash parts when negotiating repairs of the motor vehicle with any repairer for a period of three years, the year the motor vehicle was manufactured and the two succeeding years thereafter, unless the motor vehicle owner consents in writing at the time of the repair to the use of aftermarket crash parts.
(a) Effective July 1, 1995, before beginning repair work on crash parts, a motor vehicle body shop shall:
(1) Provide a list to the vehicle owner of the replacement crash parts that the body shop intends to use in making repairs;
(2) Specify whether the replacement parts are genuine crash parts; and
(3) Identify the manufacturer of the parts if the replacements parts are aftermarket crash parts.
(b) If the replacement crash parts to be used by the body shop in the repair work are aftermarket crash parts, the body shop shall include with its estimate the following written statement: "THIS ESTIMATE HAS BEEN PREPARED BASED ON THE USE OF AFTERMARKET CRASH PARTS THAT ARE NOT MANUFACTURED BY THE ORIGINAL MANUFACTURER OF THE VEHICLE OR BY A MANUFACTURER AUTHORIZED BY THE ORIGINAL MANUFACTURER TO USE ITS NAME OR TRADEMARK. THE USE OF AN AFTERMARKET CRASH PART MAY INVALIDATE ANY REMAINING WARRANTIES OF THE ORIGINAL MANUFACTURER ON THAT CRASH PART."
(c) The notices and statements required under this section shall be made in writing in a clear and conspicuous manner on a separate piece of paper in ten-point capital type.
(d) This section may not be construed to replace or alter any provision under article six or any other provision of this chapter.
This article does not:
(a) Prohibit a person from filing an action for damages against a body shop; or
(b) Require a person first to exhaust any administrative remedy he may have.
A violation of any provision of this article is an unfair or deceptive act or practice within the meaning of section one hundred two, article six of this chapter and is subject to the enforcement and penalty provisions contained in this chapter.