Federal Moving Regulations
When you hire local movers, interstate movers, or nationwide movers, you have rights and responsibilities as set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA.)
These rights are designed to protect you and to make sure you’re not subjected to illegal or unethical moving practices.
Take time to understand these rights before you begin the process of selecting a moving company. Read a general overview below and then take a look at the brochure for more details about your consumer rights and responsibilities.
You’ve probably heard moving horror stories about disreputable moving companies charging thousands of dollars more than the estimate or holding goods for payment of extra charges. These rights are designed to protect the consumer, so it’s very important to understand what your rights are as begin your relocation.
Protect your household goods by understanding your rights. One of the most important is regarding the bill of lading.
Your mover must provide a bill of lading. This is required by law, and the document must contain the same information as on the order for service. Never sign a bill of lading without reading and agreeing with everything contained therein.
Before you begin the move, read and understand all of the rights discussed in the attached brochure.
As with any type of business interaction, it’s important to do your due diligence. This is true both when choosing a moving company and throughout the process. Your responsibilities include:
Non-Binding vs. Binding Estimates
When you receive a binding estimate, that means you cannot be required to pay more than the amount on the estimates—but there are exceptions including:
- You Add Additional Items to the Shipment
In this case, the mover must provide an updated binding estimate or you must agree, in writing, to convert to a non-binding agreement. If this doesn’t happen before the move begin, the original agreement remains in place.
- There are Unforeseen Circumstances, Such as Stairs or Required Parking Permits
The mover can bill for such charges within 30 of the delivery of your items.
Some consumers think that the mover is automatically responsible for 100% of damage that occurs during the move—but this isn’t necessarily the case. It depends entirely on the type of coverage you agree to when you sign the contract. Options include:
- Full Replacement Value: This comprehensive coverage requires that your mover repair or replace the article. While this coverage will add significantly to the cost of your move, some consumers value the peace of mind of knowing they are protected should items be lost or damaged.
- Released Value: This protection is included at no cost but reimbursement is limited to 60 cents per pound.
- Third-Party Insurance: Another way to protect your cargo is with third-party insurance. If you choose this option through your mover, they must provide you with a copy of the policy. If they don’t, they are liable for any loss or damage caused by their negligence.
Another type of claim is a delay claim. These are filed when a consumer had contracted for guaranteed pickup and delivery dates, and there was a delay. The bill of lading provided by the mover should include information about available penalties when there is a delay.
Learn More About Your Rights and Responsibilities
Make sure you’re fully protected by learning about all the rights afforded to you. The attached brochure is an excellent tool for anyone planning a move.
When you need local or nationwide movers you can trust, choose the proven services of Solomon & Sons Relocation. Call today or fill out our online contact form now to get started.