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If you want your vehicle ruined and your bank account looted, then Jeff Lilly Restorations is the place for you. Lilly is a liar, a crook, and a con man. He talks a good show and has a glossy website, but it is all smoke and mirrors. He lifts photos from other websites and put them on his website. If you are dumb enough to leave your vehicle with him, this is what will happen: he will take your vehicle apart, lose or ruin the parts, charge you to re-buy those parts, do shoddy work that you authorized, do even worse work that you did not authorize, take forever to do simple tasks in order to run up the billable hours, charge you for nonexistent "shop supplies," and cause damage to your vehicle so that he can charge you to "fix" them. As soon as you catch onto what he is up to, he ceases to answer phone calls and e-mail messages. Your only contact with him will be the inflated bills in your mailbox. When you finally do reach him and complain, he tells you to shut up and pay your bill or he will have everything that is yours hauled away to a salvage yard immediately. He loves to hold people hostage. That is why he hides behind a locked gate with security. Stay far away from this S.O.B.
 

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He's in San Antonio. I try and avoid BBB non accredited businesses like his. There is a fee to get BBB accreditation so some see it as a "pay to play" system but they do a good job with customer service complaints.

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BBB...I have found that the BBB is useless. It's like a corrupt politician. A business pays them to protect them from complaints, rather than protecting the consumer.
I know there will be many on this forum who will have their own horror stories about the BBB.
They operate much like Child Protective Services, where the typical response to a complaint is "there's nothing we can do".
 

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The competitors of the BBB love to point out that (seeing as how the BBB predates modern ecommerce) they make their money from registrations.

I heard a rumor from a long time ago that when the ecommerce reviews and recommendations features were taking off, the BBB tried to keep itself in the game by allowing businesses to pay to clean their ratings. That's the worst rumor that I can recall. They're still better than J.D. Power. Companies purchase their awards.
 

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Just reading through his description of how they attack a job all I can see is $$$$$. But you can't complain as he states that they charge for every hour any employee spends on your car. Apparently they even bill you for any time the broom pusher spends sweeping the floor around your project. And they bill you for any time spent searching for parts. And they bill you for those mysterious shop supplies. It's all spelled out right there on the website.
 

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Just reading through his description of how they attack a job all I can see is $$$$$. But you can't complain as he states that they charge for every hour any employee spends on your car. Apparently they even bill you for any time the broom pusher spends sweeping the floor around your project. And they bill you for any time spent searching for parts. And they bill you for those mysterious shop supplies. It's all spelled out right there on the website.
Sound like a Law office billing procedure.
 

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- The BBB will accept complaints which affects a member's ratings. So, if a member gets a lot of complaints, that member will have a low score. But that's pretty much all the BBB does. They're not going to help customers get their money back or take a business to court which is what most people want.

- Other consumer web sites like Angie's List and Yelp are complete scams. They literally and actually accept payments to block bad reviews and promote good reviews. My son used to manage a high end bar in Seattle. He regularly received calls from Yelp. The rep would say, "Hey, you've got a lot of positive reviews here. Sign up for our monthly program and we'll make them visible. Oh, and we can make those pesky, negative reviews go away." I've heard the same about Angie's List which may have started out OK, but has now sold out. I used to really like Trip Advisor, but lately I'm seeing some troubling signs there as well.

- Obviously, the OP is extremely angry and wants to vent as well as warn people. I can understand that. So, let's not be too hard on him. Hopefully, he can get his car back and we can help him to do the work himself.
 

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- The BBB will accept complaints which affects a member's ratings. So, if a member gets a lot of complaints, that member will have a low score. But that's pretty much all the BBB does. They're not going to help customers get their money back or take a business to court which is what most people want.
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Having tried BBBs in several states (retired military), the responses I have gotten have literally been: "noted", and "we'll check into this" but they have resulted in absolutely nothing -- even when I checked back with the BBB in regards to their ratings of the business in quesion. I might as well not even have called the BBB because my complaint was lost or flushed.

In addition, the legal side will tell you to file a civil case.
I have even done this (and even paid a lawyer). Civil suits are also a joke. If the business decides not to show up in court, there's nothing you can do.
MAYBE it depends on the size of the complaint (or the publicity?), but even getting the case to be heard, and then COLLECTING on a civil suit is a waste of time.

I'd still suggest a legal consultation, as every state is probably different -- and every lawyer has different skills.
Good luck!
 

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Yeah, the reality is consumers have very few options to recover funds from unscrupulous restoration shops. That's how they continue to bilk customers and stay in business. The only recourse is word of mouth. Recently, a Mustang specialty shop opened in Colorado Springs. I did some searching online and learned the owner was in Denver then moved to Castle Rock before moving to Colorado Springs. I dropped a line to a Denver Mustang club and asked about him. The answer I got literally included the words "Crook" and "Run!". :oops:
 

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I hear stories all the time, like the guy who waited endlessly for his car to be worked on, gave up and went to the shop to haul it away, and discovered they had removed and sold the transmission (car was there for body work). He got off easy, I had to find all sorts of things for another guy because the shop that had his Shelby was parting it out…

Had a student teacher one time who had a special engine built for his Nova. When it was done, a guy in the shop was spinning donuts with it in their parking lot with it, slid sideways at high speed into a parked 18-wheeler.

Sticking to Mustangs, I've seen stuff come into the Barn that you wouldn't believe. Not just quarter panels 1/2" too far forward, or inner rockers 2" too high at the front. One guy brought in a "fresh restoration" GT convertible. Very shiny. Rust holes in the frame rails filled with foam and undercoated, front torque boxes glued in with latex bathtub caulk. And for only $35,000. Last I heard there was a warrant out for that crook.
 

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Yeah, the reality is consumers have very few options to recover funds from unscrupulous restoration shops. That's how they continue to bilk customers and stay in business. The only recourse is word of mouth. Recently, a Mustang specialty shop opened in Colorado Springs. I did some searching online and learned the owner was in Denver then moved to Castle Rock before moving to Colorado Springs. I dropped a line to a Denver Mustang club and asked about him. The answer I got literally included the words "Crook" and "Run!". :oops:
You should put the name here so none of our friends get burned by this asshat.
 

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So do we count E.G. Anderson as one of those "DUMB ENOUGH" people?
Sounds like Jeff Lilly is just using the Phantom Works billing procedure, maybe he'll be on TV soon.
 

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Buddy of mine likes Chevys. Took a 67 and 68 Camaro to a local guy, one was supposed to get quarters and the other a pan. He dropped off all the sheet metal and a 4-bolt main engine to go in one. Making my rounds, I got to see less and less activity there. My buddy finally made it out to check on the progress and found the shop had moved to a place with lower rent, and moved his cars. Whew. Was harder to get by the new place and check, but when he did, the shop was now closed. Cars were gone. When he found the owner, he said the cars must have been stolen from the shop. What a shame. He made a police report but the division commander decided it was a civil matter rather than a theft. My buddy prepared to file a lawsuit, the guy declared bankruptcy, and the next thing you know, he died. My buddy still has no idea where the cars are, still has the VINs and Protect-O-Plates for both cars, but unless he can convince law enforcement to enter the cars into NCIC as stolen, and someone registers them, there's no way to track them. Gone.
My cars spend their days and nights here with me. I do all my own mechanical work.. I'm EXTREMELY apprehensive about sending them anywhere to be painted. I think I'm gonna hafta learn to do it myself.
 
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I can't help you with this, but I can offer my sincere condolences as I know first hand how frustrating this type of thing is and how terrible you must be feeling. I am truly sorry this has happened to you and I do hope you are able to get it resolved without to much agony.

I am having trouble myself at the moment because I was an idiot and actually thought I could take my car to a mechanic and expect a job to be done properly. I knew better...?
 

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Trail him home from the shop, bring a “Molotov cocktail” :)
 

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Trail him home from the shop, bring a “Molotov cocktail” :)
Unfortunately, this isn't the Wild West. And, unlike bilking customers, police WILL respond to arson. Which is too bad because that's why scammers get away with what they do.
 

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You should put the name here so none of our friends get burned by this asshat.
I did indeed post it on VMF, but I couldn't recall his name. Here's the original post:

 
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