Causative is used to say that you arrange for someone else to do a job for you. For example, "John has the car repaired". This is different from "John has repaired the car" because the latter sentence means that John did the work himself.

Now, I would like to merge the following two sentences, using a relative clause: "John has the car repaired" - "Now the car works perfectly".

I mean something like "The car, which John has repaired, now works perfectly". But this sentence is wrong because it means that the car was repaired by John himself. However, I don't know how to get it right. Could you help me out please?

In relation to this question, I began wondering whether there is a way to transform the sentence "John has the car repaired" into passive voice. I know that it is already passive in some sense but it still has an object: the car. So, is it possible to say something like "The car was had/got/gotten repaired by John"?

  • 1
    John has had the car repaired so that it works perfectly.
    – Xanne
    May 9, 2020 at 22:41
  • 3
    The car, which John has had repaired, now works perfectly. May 10, 2020 at 2:17
  • 2
    Don't need the perfect, and it can be a restrictive clause, too: The car that John had repaired now works perfectly. May 10, 2020 at 2:32
  • 1
    "The car that John had repaired now works perfectly" could be causative or normal past perfect: in the latter sense the sequence of tenses is unusual but possible. "The pie that John had tasted is stale now" isn't causative.
    – Stuart F
    Jul 9, 2022 at 10:23
  • ... unless John supervises quality control in a pie factory. Dec 6, 2022 at 19:37

2 Answers 2


As Tinfoil Hat suggested, the following is fine:

The car, which John has had repaired, now works perfectly.

You could also keep the clauses in the original order:

John has had the car, which now works perfectly, repaired.

However, "repaired" is now separated from its ancestors by a relatively lengthy clause. Therefore, some people may prefer to postpone ("extrapose") the relative clause:

John has had the car repaired, which now works perfectly.

As for your last question, either "to be" or "to get" can function as a passive auxiliary:

The car was repaired by John.
The car got repaired by John.

(Of course, including "by John" suggests that John repaired it himself.)


Ever since John had the car repaired, it's been working perfectly.

is an alternative that reverses your original order. The "ever since" somewhat extends/specifies the time period of the original "now". It also emphasizes the fact that John had it repaired rather than it's current working condition. I propose it only because it may flow better than constructions with a relative clause.

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