CARFAX – Pittsburgh Pennsylvania

CARFAX Devalued my vehicle with an incorrect, ” Accident/Damage Reported”, entry in the report. Internet!!

Quite by accident, while at the BMW dealership that services my car, I asked for an appraisal, partly to satisfy my curiosity as to its value, and partly to determine if I wanted to seriously think about trading it in on a newer model. After looking at the vehicle, the salesman asked me if the vehicle had been involved in any accidents, to which I replied “no”. He walked away saying he’d be right back, after a few minutes he re-emerged waving a folder in his hand and shouted, for all present to hear, “We don’t want it, its been wrecked”. I immediately responded that he must be mistaken or crazy, at which time he pushed the car’s “CARFAX” report into my chest. In this report it stated that the vehicle had been involved in an accident with another vehicle, with damage to the passenger side rear quarter panel. When I protested that the report was in error, I was met with the “yea sure” response reserved for proven liars. As soon as I could get to a computer, I went on line and after some misstarts accessed their help department and downloaded the forms necessary to change the error. As soon as I read the form, I could see that they make it nearly impossible for the consumer to change misinformation, as they require you to provide documentation that their information is in error. Fortunately for me, I thought, I had documentation showing that what they had reported as an accident involving two automobiles and damage to the right rear of mine, was in fact an incident in which a drunk staggered into the roadway and thrust his foot and ankle under my rear tire while pitching headfirst to the ground. Because an injury to a person was involved and transport by EMS to a medical facility; a police report was required. My insurance company was notified the same day as the incident, and they dispatched an adjuster to my home to photograph the vehicle even though no claim was filed. Two days after the incident, at the aforementioned dealership, the car received its annual inspection and was found to be flawless in all respects. The police report stated that a drunk and drugged pedestrian, after staggering in the roadway, was contacted on his foot and ankle with the right rear tire of the vehicle, with no damage to the vehicle. After providing CARFAX with all of this information by fax, all at my expense, I expected a retraction and an apology. I received neither. They informed me that because a police report had been filed indicating an accident had occurred, they were justified in reporting it in a highlighted banner at the very top of their form as “Accident/Damage Reported”, and only on pg.3 of a 5pg. report is it modified to say that the accident involved a pedestrian with no damage to the vehicle. They steadfastly refuse to accept any responsibility for the initial false report, and furthermore, continue almost wholly intact, the Reports impression of some kind of damage to the vehicle.

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