When a car has been determined a total loss due to the extent of damages it sustained in an accident, insurance companies evaluate the vehicle to determine its actual cash value (ACV). A vehicle is normally totaled out by an insurer when the costs of repairs, storage, etc. are found to be between 51 and 80 percent of the vehicle's worth.
To determine the ACV, insurance companies may use the NADA guide, Kelley Blue Book or Edmunds, which consumers have historically used to determine the value of their vehicle, but most insurance carriers also use computer software – such as CCC.
CCC is short for Certified Collateral Corporation Information Services, Inc. and provides technology and data to car insurance carriers so they can make accurate and informed decisions about vehicle claims. CCC states that it processes the majority of automotive claims in the U.S. each year.
CCC has a tool that allows car insurance companies to leverage detailed data --aggregated claims and repair information that has been processed over the last 30 years—-- to calculate a value for a totaled vehicle. This is why many auto insurers use CCC's total-loss valuation program to determine a vehicle's total-loss value.
While many insurance companies use CCC’s software and applications, there are is other software and databases that can be used, such as AudaExplore and Mitchell.
CCC helps establish vehicle valuations by employing field inventory representatives to physically inspect vehicles at local dealers nationwide as well as researching local newspapers and automobile publications. CCC values take into consideration all aspects affecting the value of a vehicle, including its age, mileage, options, and condition.
All of this information is stored in the CCC database. This database allows CCC to continuously track the local market value of various vehicles.
The ultimate goal of CCC's database is to identify vehicles in your area that are comparable to the one that was declared a total loss. These comparable vehicles are known as comps, and their information is loaded into software that is licensed by insurance companies.
Insurance companies that purchase third party software or applications, like the CCC’s tool, do so to help them quickly estimate costs in automotive claims and collision repairs, which in turn should speed up the claims settlement process so you can obtain your check faster.