Bailey's Moving and Storage's Insurance and Reimbursement Policies
Posted Aug 15th 2022
The Bailey's Moving & Storage Handbook to Our Insurance and Reimbursement Policies
When you’re in the thick of it with scheduling your move, it can be easy to overlook valuation coverage and all that it entails. However, understanding the level of coverage you’re planning to select and what to do in the event something is damaged can drastically alter how your post-move journey progresses.
In this article, we’ve included everything you need to know about Bailey’s Moving and Storage’s insurance and reimbursement policies. From initially selecting coverage to submitting a claim, we’ve got it all.
Will Things Break During a Move?
Though our moving crew does all they can to avoid breaking things during your move, accidents do happen. It's more likely that something will break during a long-distance move, but items can also break during local move. That's why moving companies offer customers the option to select valuation coverage for their upcoming move. It guarantees that, even if something does break as a result of our moving crew or the moving truck, customers can be correctly compensated.
The First Step: Select Your Valuation Coverage
When you’re signing your moving paperwork, you’ll be presented with the difficult decision of selecting the valuation coverage you’d like to protect your move with. There are two standard (and one not so standard) types of valuation you can pick from:
- Full (Replacement) Value Protection
- Released or Waiver of Full (Replacement) Value Protection
- Third-Party Insurance
Continue on to learn more about the benefits and drawbacks of each moving coverage option.
Full (Replacement) Value Protection
Let's start with the most comprehensive option. With Full Value Protection (FVP), you select the value of your household goods, and the moving company assumes financial responsibility for that valued amount. Basically, you list out what your things are worth, and if something sustains damage in transit, the movers will either repair, replace, or reimburse the item for the agreed-upon settlement.
This will increase the cost of your move, which is a drawback for many. However, FVP guarantees protection from accidents that may occur during your move. Though FVP isn’t for everyone, customers with moves greater than 50 miles should consider it.
Released Value Protection
When considering valuation, moving companies will offer either FVP or Released Value Protection (RVP). With RVP, you release the total value of your household goods at $0.60 per pound, and the mover assumes liability for the weight of your shipment, not the value.
RVP is the most economical for customers, as it comes at no additional cost to their move. However, this option is not ideal for those who are moving high-value items and want to ensure they’re compensated for any damages. For example, if someone wanted to ship their antique painting overseas, the value of that painting is determined by its weight, not by the customer.
Though not standard practice with most movers, you have the option to purchase third-party cargo insurance for your shipment.
With third-party insurance, customers can select a more personalized valuation coverage for their shipment. However, the process of obtaining the insurance is more complicated than the ones included in your moving paperwork.
Be Mindful of How You Pack
In the pre-move stage, selecting valuation coverage is equally important to figuring out how you’re going to pack.
For insuring your belongings, the outside condition of the boxes and containers holding your household goods is just as important as the inside of them. Most moving companies, like Bailey’s, offer add-on packing services for their customers. They do this because packing boxes correctly is your key to reimbursement in case of damage.
So, just like how FVP guarantees you’ll be compensated for damages, having your movers pack your things ensures they’ll be protected under your selected valuation. Here’s an example of where this may come into play:
After meeting with an estimator and going over their written estimate for an interstate move, a customer has elected to cover the full value of their household goods with FVP. The customer also elects to pack their belonging themselves but doesn’t add padding materials to the boxes. Weeks after packing those boxes, the movers pick up the items and load them up. However, three days into their two-week journey, the driver gets a flat tire and swerves while pulling to the side of the road. As this happens, the customer’s boxes justle, and several plates and expensive vases break inside the boxes. Even though the customer has selected FVP, the movers can’t be responsible for improperly packed boxes. Therefore, when the customer goes to file a claim, they won't be compensated for the broken plates and vases.
Transit is long and can sometimes be a jagged journey depending on where your things are headed. If you want to make sure things get there safely, or that they’re actually insured, make sure to pack your boxes properly or ask your movers to do it.
After You've Moved
As soon as your movers pack up and drive your belongings down the street, you’ve entered the post-move phase. This means you’re responsible for three things:
- Getting to your new home.
- Accepting your shipment during your delivery spread.
- Checking the current condition of everything that’s been unloaded.
A common misconception when working with full-service movers is that your move finishes when the crew unloads your household goods. However, after the unloading comes a vital step for insurance and reimbursement: checking the status of your valuables.
Before You Unpack
Take pictures of everything before and after you open the boxes. Note things as they are in the boxes, and document any differences you see before you've even pulled things out. Notate anything you see that’s out of the ordinary and keep an open line of communication with your moving coordinator if you’re preparing to submit a claim.
Documenting Any Damages
The claims process, like the moving industry, is regulated by federal law. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) oversees the entire process.
Because it's so regulated, it’s easier for customers and movers to resolve any issues quickly and efficiently if they arise. Taking plenty of pictures of the condition of the outside of the moving boxes and the items inside those boxes ensures customers can submit a claim that’s detailed and accurate.
Always keep in mind that the more detail you provide when submitting a claim, the better.
Submitting a Claim
The process of submitting a claim began back when you selected your valuation coverage. Weeks ago, you determined what responsibility movers have in the event your things sustain damage and either packed your boxes yourself or opted to have your movers pack them. All those steps are vital once you arrive at submitting a claim.
Since your liability level is determined by you before the move begins, you’ll know what to expect about reimbursement or replacement of damaged goods. Something to pay attention to is the necessary time frame in which you have to submit a claim or notify your moving coordinator. In most cases, you’ll want to notify your coordinator of loss or damage within 90 days of receiving your shipment. Regarding submitting the actual claim, you should do so within 4 months of shipment delivery for local and long-term storage. You’ve got up to 9 months to complete and send the claims form for long-distance moves.