Ashley Moody Announces Multistate Action Against CarMax Over the Disclosure of Safety Recalls

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody announced a multistate action against CarMax Auto Superstores, Inc.

As a result of a nationwide investigation by Moody and 35 other attorneys general, CarMax is now required to disclose open unrepaired recalls related to the safety of used vehicles before consumers make the purchase. CarMax must also pay the states $1 million.

“This nationwide action will be industry changing—requiring CarMax to be transparent with customers and ensure they have all the information about unrepaired vehicle recalls before they make a purchase,” Moody said.

CarMax will continue to use the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration’s vehicle identification number tool to provide this important safety information to consumers. Consumers can also avail themselves of this tool to check for any open recalls on their vehicles.

This industry-changing settlement requires CarMax to clearly and conspicuously disclose to consumers that a used vehicle is subject to an open, unrepaired recall and the safety risks of that recall before a purchase is made. CarMax must present the consumer with copies of any open recalls and obtain the consumer’s signature before presenting any other sales paperwork. CarMax is also required to include hyperlinks for vehicles advertised online and QR codes for vehicles on the lot that link directly to any open recalls on the vehicle so consumers can access this data as they shop. Additionally, CarMax agrees to not represent vehicles as “safe” or have been repaired for “safety” issues.

In addition to Florida, represented by Consumer Protection Division Multistate and Privacy Bureau Chief Patrice Malloy and Senior Assistant Attorney General Diane Oates, the attorneys general from the following states participated in this action: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

CarMax replied that it has reached a settlement with the attorneys general of 36 states to resolve a 2014 inquiry surrounding its advertising and sales practices related to vehicle recalls. Since 2014, CarMax has been disclosing vehicle specific recall information in our sales process and online advertising. The settlement terms are consistent with CarMax’s longstanding practices.

“CarMax led the industry in recall transparency by sharing vehicle specific recall information in-store and online to ensure our customers know about open recalls prior to purchase. In fact, as soon as NHTSA made available vehicle specific recall information in 2014, we began providing the information to customers nationwide and we continue to do so today. As CarMax is not authorized by manufacturers to complete recall repairs and close out recalls, we work hard to ensure our customers have the information they need to take action and have recalls repaired at a manufacturer-authorized facility,” said Joe Wilson, the Chief Operating Officer of CarMax.

“CarMax’s purpose is to drive integrity by being honest and transparent in every interaction and our approach to disclosing recalls is no different,’ CarMax noted.

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