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Help Me Howard gets results for man whose car was stripped to skeleton by Maaco

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QUEENS (PIX11) -- This is a story with a very simple lesson: be careful where you bring your car for work.

Nicolas Etienne of Queens had a ’67 GTO he wanted to restore. So he drove it over to the Maaco around the corner. Ten months later all he had was a new trunk and some flooring. And the car he drove in had to be towed back home.

HOWARD: “Doesn’t look like they’ve done much of anything.”

NICOLAS: “They just pretty much took it down to the bare metal. Took out my window. They re-did the trunk. The floor but that’s about it.”

HOWARD: “Well what were their reasons? Why did they have it for so long? What did they tell you?”

NICOLAS: “They didn’t have the man power was one excuse. Another excuse was they were waiting on parts I never ordered. They made up a thing saying I was supposed to get them certain parts and I never did. And they kept giving me excuses. Then in April when I called the police, they said it would be ready in two weeks.”

So Nicolas got in touch with me. And we paid a visit to the Maaco shop. I got involved in some lengthy negotiations with the owner, a fellow named “El.” I pointed out that the shop hadn’t exactly given its customer top of the line service. In the end, we worked out an arrangement. El agreed to refund $2,500.

Nicolas appreciates all the work, but isn’t completely happy. So I told him to think about. Don’t cash the check yet. Decide if he wants to put this to rest. Or give back the check and take this to small claims court.