The Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) has called on members of the Oklahoma Senate Business and Commerce Committee to oppose legislation that would require insurance companies to advise consumers, in writing, if a non-original equipment crash, emission or safety part is to be used in a repair.
Further, the bill would require a consumer to sign a consent form that would include the following statement: “This estimate has been prepared based on the use of crash parts supplied by a source other than the manufacturer of your motor vehicle. Warranties applicable to these replacement parts are provided by the manufacturer or distributor of these parts rather than the manufacturer of your vehicle.”
The bill defines an emissions part as an oxygen sensor, catalytic converter, exhaust pipe, exhaust manifold, fuel distributor, electronic emission control unit, onboard diagnostic unit or any related parts or components. A safety part under the bill means a replacement of parts or systems essential to vehicle operation, suspension, electronic control unite, brake parts, safety systems and air bags.
In a letter sent to members of the Senate Committee, AAIA’s vice president, government affairs, Aaron Lowe, said, “The legislation is without merit. If enacted, it will unfairly give vehicle owners the false impression that aftermarket parts are of inferior quality to the original equipment component that was installed in their vehicles. There is absolutely no truth to this impression. Non-original equipment parts are as good as and often of a higher quality than the original equipment parts they replace. In fact, they are often produced by the same company, but may be shipped in a different box.”
Lowe urged the committee to oppose “this unnecessary, anti-consumer, and anti-competitive legislation. Consumers in the state of Oklahoma should benefit from free and fair competition. This legislation will provide an unfair and unearned competitive advantage to one industry, the vehicle manufacturers, and significantly harm consumers and many small businesses in the independent vehicle aftermarket that provide quality parts at affordable rates.”