As of 2015, California is the only state that maintains a Bureau of Automotive Repair or BAR. In California, the BAR is part of the Department of Consumer Affairs, a governmental body tasked with protecting all types of consumers.
In 1972, the BAR was born with the passage of California's Automotive Repair Act. Broadly speaking, the body serves to counteract fraud and poor service in the automotive repair industry. The BAR is responsible for registering and regulating auto repair businesses throughout the state. Furthermore, the BAR mediates disputes between customers and automotive companies. By arranging repair refunds, rework and repair cost adjustments, the BAR saves California residents at least $6 million every year. The BAR also administrates California's Smog Check system to reduce vehicular emissions. The BAR became responsible for its state's Smog Check program in 1984. The body licenses and oversees all Smog Check inspection stations and associated personnel.
Although the BAR does take disciplinary action against noncompliant auto professionals, the BAR encourages voluntary compliance through training courses and educational conferences. After commissioning collision repairs, California residents can request free auto work inspections from the BAR. The bureau also helps consumers find rare parts needed to reduce vehicle emissions to acceptable levels.