Can you sue your movers?

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Can you sue a mover for negligent damage above the .60/pound?

Movers moved items into storage unit. The next day I saw they turned tables over on top of iron benches; bookshleves on top of washer/dryer and more...no protection. i already see a lot of damage. is there protection above the .60/pound? Can I sue?

Asked by Cindy on 9/24/2013 under category Moving Companies

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Jenna Farmer
Answered on 9/25/2013

Hi, thank you for visiting Movers.com to find an answer to your important question. I’m very sorry to hear of your negative experience, but hopefully I can provide some information that will help you figure out what to do next.

Unfortunately, moving experiences don’t always go smoothly – between all the hauling, loading and unloading, sometimes items get damaged. The best way to protect yourself against any moving mishap is to get educated on the claims process.

Moving insurance

If you only opted for the basic insurance coverage offered by your company, the amount of damages you can recover is limited to the weight of the items, as suggested by the 60 cents per pound figure. For added protection, many people look into insurance from third-party providers for the move.

Deal with your movers directly

Above all else, you will want to have an honest conversation with your moving company – notify the company as soon as possible and inquire about specifics when it comes to handling complaints. After this, you must file a written complaint.

According to federal regulations, movers cannot "voluntarily pay a claim … unless and until a formal claim in writing for a specified or determinable amount of money shall have been filed in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (b) of this section 49CFR370.3 – Filing of Claims." This means calling the company and lodging a verbal complaint does not hold them liable for response or resolution of said complaint.

You can also file a claim with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the American Moving and Storage Association, and with the Better Business Bureau.

Get prepared

If all else fails, you may end up in small claims court. Though this isn’t an ideal end to any situation, it may be unavoidable. Be sure to have all documentation of the damages, like before and after photos, receipts for proof of value, etc.

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The Movers Duties and ...
Your movers will have plenty of responsibilities as they carry out your move and they are responsible for more than just transporting your goods from place to place. It is important to understand exactly what their responsibilities are. By knowing your mover's duties in advance, you can be sure that your movers are doing exactly what is expected of them.
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The default compensation movers provide for damaged goods is 60 cents per pound per article – otherwise known as Released Value protection. It’s always a good idea to purchase extra insurance to ensure that your items are fully covered against damage. Full Value Protection holds the movers liable for replacing the broken or lost item with something similar, repairing the item or compensating you with its full cash value.
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Be sure to find out if the company you’re interested in hiring is reputable by performing your own background check. Search for reviews from previous customers, search for the company on the Better Business Bureau’s website and be sure to ask for references from previous customers. Make sure you feel completely comfortable with the moving company you choose before entrusting them with all your belongings.

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