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Moving Insurance and Liability Coverage
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Moving insurance is a crucial part of your move as it protects your belongings. It is also mandatory for all local movers
who are operating
and transporting household goods to provide liability insurance. While many people take moving insurance for granted, it is good practise to always plan for the unexpected.
Details about various types of liabilities are available in brochures like "Here's What You Need to Know About Placing a Value on Your Household Goods Shipment Before You Move" and "Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move," which are provided by your movers.
For more information about types of insurance, here are the broad classifications of various liabilities:
Basic carrier liability
This is the minimal amount of liability that is automatically provided by all licensed movers as part of your standard moving fee. To activate this liability, you have to sign a statement of agreement on the bill of lading.
This insurance is limited to 60 cents per pound per article regardless of the original value of the item. This type of insurance is also called "released value" and does not provide full coverage for damaged goods.
Declared value protection
Depreciated value of an item regardless of its current price is provided under this type of liability.
The value of your belongings is calculated based on the total weight of the shipment multiplied by a specific amount per pound (minimum charge $1.25 times the weight). A mover additionally charges $7 for every $1,000 of liability. This liability ensures partial protection of your belongings for a substantial amount.
Full replacement liability
This is the most comprehensive type of liability where lost or damaged articles are repaired or replaced by giving full cash value for the item. It is the most expensive option recommended for valuable items and should be purchased in advance.
The coverage includes the deductible which reduces the premium, but you are responsible for the first $100, $250 or $500 of repairs depending on the deductible amount. This way the mover can protect themself from losses on damage to high-value items.
Extraordinary value items
Items like crystal, antiques, figurines, art, collectibles and silverware that have values that exceed $100 per pound per article fall under the
category of extraordinary value items.
If your shipment includes extraordinary value items, then you have to complete and sign a high-value inventory. If you fail to sign the inventory at the time of claim you are entitled to $100 per pound per article based on the actual weight of the belongings.
Declaration of items under extraordinary value on the bill of lading is mandatory. Protection of extraordinary value items is not available for shipments that have adapted basic carrier liability option.
Calculation of insurance
The number of rooms you are moving and the total weight of the contents of the move determine the amount of insurance that you require.
To calculate your insurance:
- Make an inventory of items that you are moving
- Include the weight of each item
- Also list the replacement value
- Summarize these totals to get your estimate
TIP: It is wise to take pictures of the items that you are moving to establish the condition of your belongings.
If damage occurs
In case of damaged or lost items, the mover must respond to the claim within 30 days and the issue must be resolved in 120 days. To resolve conflicting issues, arbitration is chosen. If you are not satisfied with the outcome, you are eligible to sue for damages.