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Your Rights When Moving

Understanding And Protecting Your Move

Moving is a stressful time. There are so many things to take care of. Plus when you hire a moving company there is the necessity of dealing with them and seeing that they transport your goods safely. A lot of people are unaware of their basic rights when moving. This article will give you a brief outline of your rights when moving so as to enable you to have a peaceful and worry-free moving experience.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has made it compulsory for movers to provide you with a booklet titled “Your rights and responsibilities when you move” prior to the moving process. Furthermore a copy of this booklet is also available on the FMCSA website www.protectyourmove.gov. You may also receive further information regarding your rights when moving at this website.

The regulations listed in this booklet only apply when the mover is transporting your goods from one state to another though basic guidelines obviously apply in single commercial zone moves.

What are your rights when moving in brief.

  1. Movers must give written estimates. These estimates may be binding or non-binding. Binding estimates are usually given for a fee. Only the binding estimate acts as a contract once you have agreed to it.
  2. You have the right to be present each time your shipment is weighed.
  3. You may request a re-weigh of your shipment.
  4. Your mover can claim up to 110% of the non binding estimate at the time of delivery. If for any reason the actual payment exceeds that of the written estimate by more than 110%, you have thirty days to make the payment after delivery.
  5. In general, your mover is legally liable for loss or damage that occurs during transportation of your goods, and during all related services identified on your mover’s lawful bill of lading.All moving companies are required to assume liability for the value of the goods transported. There are generally two levels of liability on offer.

A) Full-Value Protection (FVP): This is the most comprehensive option available for the protection of your goods. This is the type of protection that is applicable unless you waive it in writing. If any article is lost, destroyed, or damaged while in your mover’s custody, your mover has to either repair or replace the article, or pay you the cost of repair or replacement of the article.

B) Release Value of 60 Cents Per Pound Per Article: This is the other type of protection on offer. It is free of cost but offers only minimal protection. To obtain this kind of protection you need to waive full value protection in writing. You must sign a specific statement on the bill of lading agreeing to real value protection. Under this option, the mover assumes liability for no more than 60 cents per pound, per article. Thus if you have an item weighing 20 pounds worth say 500$, on loss, the liability of the mover would be merely be $12 (20 pounds x 60 cents per pound).

  1. Insurance: Movers may sell you additional liability insurance, for which the mover must provide you the necessary documentation. In case the mover does not provide you documentation for the same then the mover becomes completely liable for any loss or damage of your goods.
  2. If there is any loss or damage to your belongings in transit you must file a claim with your mover as soon as possible and within 9 months, as after this your claim may not be accepted.


This is a brief outline of your rights when moving. We have tried to cover all major points. We hope you found this article on your rights when moving useful and helpful.

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