I. BASIC DAMAGE PROTECTION
A labor-only moving company (one that does not provide transportation) is not required to provide any type of insurance or valuation coverage. However, we believe that a professional moving service should have some level of liability for the services provided. Therefore, we provide basic insurance and voluntarily abide by federal tariff laws to provide basic Released Valuation Coverage on all moves (the same coverage that a full-service moving company must provide). This is a default coverage of up to $0.60 per pound for damage to household goods while being handled by the movers. This coverage is not insurance and is not value-based.
There are at least five segments to every move: Packing, Loading, Transport, Unloading, and Unpacking. Full-service moving companies can provide a wide range of additional insurance options because they generally handle all five segments, ensuring that each item is inventoried and handled directly by their movers. College Movers LLC and other companies operating under a UniMovers license are different because we generally only provide services for one or two of the segments, most commonly loading and unloading. Because we do not transport your items we are unable to remain in possession of your household goods for the entire move. As a result of this, your movers’ liability for basic damage protection ends once they are no longer in possession of your items. This is typically when they depart your location. To have a valid claim you must notify your movers of any damage you wish to report before they depart your location.
All claims must be submitted via email or by using our Damage Claim within 30 days of the conclusion of your move to be considered valid. When submitting a claim, bear in mind that in all instances, the company responsible for any damage is the company who assisted you with your move (henceforth known as UniMovers). If your claim is not filed within 30 days it will be immediately void and we will be unable to guarantee any damage reimbursement.
II. ADDITIONAL INSURANCE OPTIONS
Full-service movers (moving companies that also transport) are required by the Department of Transportation to provide customers with the ability to purchase additional insurance coverage. Because UniMovers does not provide transportation we cannot provide additional coverage options. However, there are several types of insurance that may be available to you for your move:
Homeowners and Renters Insurance: This coverage (notable homeowners) typically will cover damage that occurs during transit. It is recommended that you speak with your insurer to confirm the details of coverage
Third-Party Insurers: There are insurance companies that will sell a policy specifically to cover household goods during a move. It is important to note that these policies tend to have a lot of exclusions and should be thoroughly reviewed before purchasing
Insurance from Truck Rental / Portable Storage Companies: Most truck rental, storage container, and transportation companies will provide insurance options for your items. These insurance coverages typically insure your household goods against loss due to fire and other natural events. Review the details of each insurance option directly with your transportation company before purchasing
III. WHAT IS NOT COVERED: EXCLUSIONS
Understanding the exclusions list will help you better prepare for your move. In addition to the list, we have also provided additional information for each item to help you understand why the items are excluded.
a. ANY ITEM NOT RECORDED ON OUR BOOKING FORM
Because we do not transport any items, once the shipment leaves our possession we cannot be liable for any damages. You have the right to inspect all items prior to the departure of our crews. Any damaged items that are not excluded from coverage must be noted on the work order to be considered claimable.
b. ANY ITEMS TRANSPORTED BY A THIRD-PARTY
Items that are transported by a third-party, PODS, or U-Pack agency are not covered. We can guarantee that your belongings will leave packed well, but we are unable to ensure they are transported to our customer’s quality standard. Due to the nature of third-party transport, it is best to provide as many blankets/pads and tie-downs for your movers to decrease any potential for damage during transport. While we do not see damages happen often, we are unable to sign-off on how another company handles your items and recommend taking the time to verify all of your items are secured and padded to your liking before our movers depart.
c. ANY ITEMS PACKED BY NON-UNIMOVERS
Items packed by people who are not affiliated of UniMovers (henceforth known as “non-UniMovers”) are not covered because we cannot be sure how the box, crate, or bin was packed, or if it was packed correctly. Furthermore, many boxes are used several times and their structure may not be adequate to prevent damage.
d. CHEAP & PARTICLE BOARD FURNITURE
Generally, cheaper items, such as particleboard furniture, are prone to damage when moved. This includes, but is not limited to “Ikea” style furniture. Although damage rarely happens, these items are not covered because of the poor quality of the material and the likelihood that damage will occur even when properly handled.
e. DAMAGE TO FURNITURE WHEN PROPER PADDING/BLANKETS WERE NOT PROVIDED
Furniture pads are extremely important in ensuring that your items are packed safely for transport. Many moving truck companies allow you to rent these quite cheaply. To be on the safe side, we recommend having one dozen blankets/pads per five feet of truck space (15-foot truck: 36 blankets/pads). If you fail to provide furniture pads/blankets it is very likely that some of your items will be damaged during the move. If an adequate amount of pads are not provided by the customer during the load we cannot be responsible for any damage, even while on-site.
f. SPECIAL CARE ITEMS OR HIGH-VALUE ITEMS WITHOUT PROPER PACKAGING AND PREPARATION
The best example of these items is flat-screen TVs. Traditional moving companies will require you to crate these items before shipment to remove their liability. We will move these items without packaging or crating at the customer’s request, however, we will not insure any of these items unless they are packed and/or crated appropriately.
g. POOL TABLES, PIANOS, TANNING BEDS, AND HIGH-VALUE ITEMS
While we do move many different types of heavy items, that does not mean we specialize in them. For these items, you should hire a company that specializes in the item, such as piano movers, pool table movers, gun safe movers, etc. A specialty company will have the appropriate equipment for these items in circumstances that are beyond UniMovers’ scope of work.
h. VEHICLES, MOTORCYCLES, RIDING LAWN MOWERS AND SIMILAR
These are not standard household items. It is the customer’s responsibility to load and secure small motorized vehicles.
i. ITEMS NON-UNIMOVERS HELPS WITH
Items moved by non-UniMovers are not covered because non-UniMovers typically do not have any training or experience. This includes items that are moved with a combination of an affiliate of UniMovers and non-UniMovers.
j. VINYL FLOORING
Generally cheaper flooring such as vinyl will scuff, scratch, and tear much easier under normal operations. This type of flooring is not covered because of the poor quality of the material and the likelihood that damage will occur even when properly handled. While damage rarely happens, it is best practice to provide the movers with the proper coverings to vinyl when dealing with tables, appliances, or safes.
k. FURNITURE WHICH CANNOT BE MOVED SAFELY OR WITHOUT DAMAGE TO THE HOME
From time to time we will be asked to move furniture in/out of a home that cannot be moved without damage to the item or the property. This may be because the item is too large to fit through the doorway, hallway, or stairwell but may also be a result of other situations. For example, washers and dryers typically have “feet” the jut out from the bottom. When moving a washer or dryer in a home with vinyl flooring it’s nearly impossible to avoid ripping the vinyl floor. In a situation where we are absolutely certain damage will occur, we will ask you to give verbal approval of the movement. In a situation where the item may cause injury in addition to property damage, it is ultimately up to the team-lead to determine how to proceed.
l. ITEMS THAT ARE ASSEMBLED OR DISASSEMBLED
Movers that provide assembly/disassembly services do so for items that are considered common and necessary throughout a normal move and do not require advanced knowledge or special tools (bed frames among other items typically fall in this category). While most items will be taken apart or put back together without issues, we cannot assume responsibility for a service that we provide as a courtesy.
m. ELECTRONICS SUCH AS GAMING CONSOLES, COMPUTERS, STEREOS, TABLETS, ETC
Most of these items will typically be packed by the customer which is excluded from coverage. Furthermore, we do not assess the working condition of electronics before moving them. Therefore, we cannot know for certain whether or not the item was in working condition prior to the move.
IV. WHAT IS COVERED
a. HOUSEHOLD PROPERTY SUCH AS WOOD FLOORS, CARPET, WALLS, DOORS AND SIMILAR
The customer is required to prepare and prep these against damage. We know that not every circumstance is possible to prepare for though and that’s why YOU’RE COVERED!
We provide coverage for items that we knowingly, and without dispute, damage. Movers are told to, upon seeing damage, document and inform our customer. Our movers must be informed of any item(s) damaged during the move prior to the completion of your move, else the item is not eligible for coverage. If there is an issue, please contact us and we will do our best to resolve it. Released Valuation coverage will be provided to all items dropped or damaged on site while in the possession of our movers, assuming they do not meet any of the exclusions above.
As stated above, the Released Valuation covers up to $0.60 per pound per item. Factors such as the condition of the item and depreciation may reduce the amount of compensation ultimately paid.
b. HOW TO MAKE A CLAIM
Any covered damage that occurs while the movers are on site must be submitted to the company that provided moving services.
1. Make sure that the broken or damaged item(s) are made known to your movers before they depart the site.
2. Contact the moving company that provided services directly and inform them of the damage. They will advise you of their claims process and, if necessary, provide you with paperwork to be completed.
V. CLAIM REMEDIES
Assuming the steps above were followed correctly and the damaged item(s) are not excluded, the moving company that provided services will have the option to repair the damaged item or compensate you in accordance with the Released Valuation. The option of repair versus compensation is at the sole discretion of the moving company you worked with.
The company may have relationships with repair companies and will have the sole authority to choose the company of their choice. Although you may request your own repair estimates be aware that costs associated with estimates or repairs will not be covered unless pre-approved by the company. Requests for reimbursement for unauthorized estimates or repairs will be denied.
If the company opts for compensation instead of repair, payment will be made to you based on the weight of the item, its condition, and depreciation, up to $0.60 per pound. It is important to remember that Released Valuation is basic coverage and may not cover the full replacement value of your damaged item(s).
VI. VALUATION COVERAGE
Damage to household goods as a direct result of services performed is covered by basic valuation coverage provided it was not a part of article III, exclusions.
PLEASE NOTE: This coverage is applicable to items dropped or otherwise damaged while being handled by the movers in the performance of services. Any damage must be reported prior to the movers departing the service location. Damage incurred while in transit, or after the movers have departed the service location, will not be accepted.
This basic coverage is not insurance, it is valuation, and is based solely on weight, i.e. up to $0.60 USD per pound. This valuation coverage only applies to household goods that are damaged whilst in the possession of the Supplier.
This basic coverage is not available for any items reported as damaged after your movers have departed your service location. This includes any damage incurred while in transit.
If you would like to learn more about our General Liability Coverage, please contact the local moving company that serviced you
Full Value coverage is also available for purchase from several companies including MovingInsurance.com. Rates start at $12 per $1,000 in coverage.
UniMovers will occasionally do moves where payment is collected through a client’s insurance company. There are various instances where this may take place, such as due to storm damage. In these instances, UniMovers reserves the right to add up to a 50% premium on these moves due to the added work necessary to collect payment and the delay in payment.
If payment can not be completed when due (on the move date) and payment is not collected within one week, a 5% premium will be added beginning 30 days after payment was due, with an additional 5% premium added for every additional month (30 days) after payment was due. If you wish to file an appeal, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If your appeal is approved, it will only be valid for 48 hours after approval.