Right to Repair: The Battle Rages On
The struggle for the Right to Repair is nothing new.
The automotive aftermarket–and other industry aftermarkets alike–have been working to get the tools and information they need from OEMs to make safe and complete repairs on a wide array of devices ranging from phones to cars for decades.
According to the Repair Association, the struggle for access to repair data can be traced back to a U.S. Department of Justice antitrust order filed against IBM in 1956 that forced the company to allow for aftermarket repairers to have access to proper equipment and information.
Fast forward more than half a century, and the front line in the battle for the Right to Repair in the automotive sector has been shifted to Massachusetts, where in 2020 nearly 2.6 million residents voted to implement statewide legislation that ensured the Right to Repair for all aftermarket providers.
In the nearly two years since then, the law has been challenged by the Alliance of Automotive Innovation–an industry lobby group made up of more than 30 automotive and technology OEMs and a decision in that suit has been delayed by at least 12 months.