How to protect yourself from fraudulent movers.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), has initiated a partnership with other Federal, State and local law enforcement agencies, consumer groups, and the moving industry to make sure you have the information you need to “Protect Your Memories, Your Money, Your Move” from fraud. Here’s an important “to do” list to help you select the right mover:
Choosing a Reputable Mover
- Get a written estimate from several movers. The estimate should be based on an actual inspection of your household goods.
- Make sure the mover is registered with the proper authority and insured. For moves from one State to another, a U.S. DOT number is required by FMCSA. You can double-check a mover’s registration on www.protectyourmove.gov. For moves within a State, requirements vary.
- Check with your State, county or local consumer affairs agency or your State attorney general.
Check the mover’s complaint history. Contact your local Better Business Bureau and consumer protection agencies.
- Remember your priorities when choosing a mover. If you hire a mover based solely on the cheapest price, you may be sacrificing other things that are actually more important, such as getting your possessions moved and delivered on time. And remember, movers are required by law to deliver your goods for no more than ten percent above the price of a non-binding estimate. This is known as the 110 percent rule.
- Do your homework. Read “Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move,” a booklet from the Federal Government that your mover is required to give you if you are moving from one State to another. This booklet also has information you’ll need if your goods are lost or damaged during the move. You can also access the booklet online, at www.protectyourmove.gov.