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Who is reporting your car's damage to Carfax? Carfax won't always tell you

KUTV Structural damage 062917.JPG
Who is reporting you car's damage to Carfax? Carfax won't always tell you (Photo: KUTV)

(KUTV) Amber Caygle wrecked her 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander three years ago. She said it was in a small wreck.

“There was no damage to me or anything else,” she said. “It was like a fender bender.”

It went to the shop for a few days, and $8,781.59 later, it came out good as new -- or so Caygle thought. She said she was shocked when she took the car to a dealership recently and was told the trade in value and was told the car was as good as totaled, she said.

The dealership showed Caygle a copy of her vehicle’s history as it was being reported by Carfax.com. In big bold letters on the front page it reads, “Structural damage reported."

Caygle said she doesn’t know how that information got there. Neither her nor the other driver’s insurance company reported structural damage, she says. The auto body shop didn’t either, Get Gephardt confirmed.

Caygle asked Carfax who had reported structural damage so she could try to get to the bottom of why the ding appeared on her car’s history. Carfax refused to tell her.

After Caygle’s complaints, Carfax did investigate on its own and determined the accident did result in structural damage.

It's a ding on amber's car's history that's costing her big money.

“[The car dealership] said my car was worth $2,000 at most and that was being nice,” Caygle said. She believes her car is worth more like $10,000 to $12,000.

Get Gephardt reached out to Carfax on Caygle’s behalf to ask why they were refusing to tell her who had reported the structural damage so she could investigate on her own. A spokesperson told us that that information is "confidential."

As for the legitimacy of the report, the spokesperson emphases that, based on what the paperwork shows was repaired, Carfax considers Caygle’s car to be structurally damaged. They pointed specifically to one piece that was repaired which the National Auto Auction Association deems worthy of the negative mark.

Carfax said reporting it as such is a matter of "safety."

Caygle said that, if that's true, somebody should have told her and her insurance company before they paid more to repair the car than it seems it is worth.

“If they're reporting that it's not safe how come I wasn't aware that it wasn't safe when they fixed my car?”

And Caygle said she believes Carfax should have to tell people who reports dings so car owners have the power to investigate and face their accusers directly.

“I feel like I'm getting screwed,” she said.

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