How charges for professional moving services are calculated:
Of the four options listed above the two with the biggest variations in pricing are the full service moves through a major van lines and the á la carte moving services offered from regional independent movers in a broker's network.
Generally, interstate moves performed by the nationally known major van lines or the regional independent moving companies are charged based on the weight of the property being transported or the amount of space (cubic feet) the property occupies on the truck, the distance traveled, time of year the move takes place, and the service options ordered.
If the charges are based upon weight make certain that you are provided with official certified scale certificates verifying the accuracy of the weight. After the goods have been packed and loaded the truck will be weighed to determine the "line-haul" charges. Only after the truck and property has been weighed and services performed can the actual final charges be determined.
Since the estimates are not typically guaranteed and the final price cannot be determined until services have been performed, the final actual charges could be higher or lower than the estimate. Generally, you are only required to pay up to the amount of the last estimate issued to receive your property. Any charges above the last estimate issued are due thirty days after delivery. Also, it is standard practice for a moving company to offer extra services at an additional charge. An example of extra services not included in the weight or "line-haul" charges are for the use of expedited guaranteed delivery service, stairs, shuttle, long carry, elevator, packing and labor, storage, appliance services, etc. You must have a clear understanding of what services are included in your estimate and what services will be charged at an additional rate.
The Law Offices of Michael Garcia specializes in interstate and intrastate transportation law and the representation of household goods moving companies and consumers in actions against moving companies. His practice focuses on regulatory compliance and training, tariff and contract requirements, and consumer protection laws. Mr. Garcia's practice has a strong emphasis on training in order to avoid litigation and regulatory actions by educating moving companies to operate in compliance with the law and to protect consumers.
Moving Company Laws Regulatory Compliance:
Moving company representation: Mr. Garcia's regulatory compliance practice includes training, drafting of shipping documents (bill of lading, order for service, binding estimate, non-binding estimate, etc.). Mr. Garcia's firm publishes custom interstate moving company tariffs in compliance with FMCSA and STB regulations. Mr. Garcia's firm also represents moving companies in regulatory actions and civil lawsuits against moving companies.
Lawsuit Against Moving Company:
Consumer representation: Mr. Garcia's represents consumers in lawsuits against moving companies and in arbitration. Lawsuits against moving companies may include damages to property, breach of contract, tariff or regulatory violations, and hostage loads.
Mr. Garcia is admitted to practice before all state courts in California; and the United States District Court Northern District of California. He frequently represents motor carriers in administrative actions before the United States DOT FMCSA Eastern, Southern, Midwestern, and Western Service Centers.
The information contained on this website is designed for informational purposes only. Nothing on this website is designed or intended to constitute legal advice. Federal, state, and local laws and regulations governing the moving industry change frequently and may be interpreted differently by different people. If you need specific legal advice you should consult Mr. Garcia directly or a representative from the US DOT.