A Florida bond to release a possessory lien by a motor vehicle repair shop is a mechanism available to automobile owners that seek return of vehicles being impounded by a repair shop or service provider while the parties seek to settle outstanding service fees. Pursuant to F.S. 559.917, (1)(a) Any customer may obtain the release of her or his motor vehicle from any lien claimed under part II of chapter 713 by a motor vehicle repair shop for repair work performed under a written repair estimate by filing with the clerk of the court in the circuit in which the disputed transaction occurred a cash or surety bond, payable to the person claiming the lien and conditioned for the payment of any judgment which may be entered on the lien. The bond shall be in the amount stated on the invoice required by s. 559.911, plus accrued storage charges, if any, less any amount paid to the motor vehicle repair shop as indicated on the invoice. The customer shall not be required to institute judicial proceedings in order to post the bond in the registry of the court, nor shall the customer be required to use a particular form for posting the bond, unless the clerk shall provide such form to the customer for filing. Upon the posting of such bond, the clerk of the court shall automatically issue a certificate notifying the lienor of the posting of the bond and directing the lienor to release the customer's motor vehicle.
The repair shop must by law release the motor vehicle upon receipt of a certificate evidencing the posting of a bond to release a possessory lien by a motor vehicle repair shop and file suit against the vehicle owner within sixty days. Failure to sue on the outstanding date within the statutory window exonerates. the surety bond.
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