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Self-regulation of service and repair sector discussed in Parliament

Chris Mason, Motor Codes director, spoke in Parliament this week of how the Government needs to show more support for the service and repair code of practice by making it a requirement of being an MoT testing station.

Mason, joined by Colin Brown, director of consumer policy at the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) and Richard Burden MP, All-Party Parliamentary Motor Group (APMG) chairman, spoke about the need to set a minimum standard of service across the industry to improve the sector’s reputation.

Mason said: "As a Motor Codes garage, each subscriber plays a part in the regulation of the industry, whereas if Government is forced to introduce legislation that imposes standards the rules will be out of the sector’s control and will certainly cost them significantly more to comply."

Motor Codes offers three codes, covering new cars, vehicle warranty products and service and repair garages.

The new car code celebrates its fifth anniversary this month and benefits from full OFT approval. This code covers 99% of all new cars registered in the UK.

The service and repair code is backed by Government, industry and consumer bodies, and has almost 6,000 garages signed-up after a year of operation.

Created by Motor Codes following a Government request to create a means of industry self-regulation, the service and repair Code aims to replicate the success of the new car code and is currently making good progress through the OFT’s approval process, having achieved stage one approval last year.

Garages can subscribe to the Motor Industry Code of Practice for Service and Repair for £75 per year at www.motorindustrycodes.co.uk.

In addition to playing a part in the self-regulation of the sector, subscribing garages are entitled to free marketing materials, independent arbitration in the event of a customer complaint and a listing on the search function of the Motor Codes website, which the body says is visited by over 300,000 people a year.

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