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Right-to-Repair ruling delayed yet again

The long-running dispute over who gets access to car repair data in Massachusetts will continue for at least another month as the federal judge hearing a lawsuit challenging the state's "right to repair" ballot measure scheduled a new hearing in the case for Sept. 1.EPA

The state’s automotive right-to-repair law, already on hold for nearly two years, will remain in limbo awhile longer.

On Thursday, US District Judge Douglas Woodlock announced that he will hold an additional hearing on the matter on Sept. 1. Woodlock provided no details about the reason for the hearing.

It’s the latest in a series of delays in resolving a lawsuit filed by the world’s leading automakers in late 2020. Earlier that year, Massachusetts voters overwhelmingly approved a law that would require all automakers selling new cars in Massachusetts to provide buyers with access to “telematic” data ― diagnostic information ― via a wireless connection. This would make it easier for consumers to get their cars fixed at independent auto repair shops, instead of manufacturer-approved dealerships.

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The carmakers sued, claiming that individual US states have no authority to pass such a law.

The case went to trial last summer and a ruling was expected months ago.


Hiawatha Bray can be reached at hiawatha.bray@globe.com. Follow him @GlobeTechLab.