What Those Moving from Dallas Ought to Know about the Valuation of Their Possessions

The valuation of possessions being shipped in any transfer of a person, family, or business from Dallas to another location – or from anywhere to anywhere – is stringently regulated by the federal government.

man putting books in a moving boxYes, in most cases, your moving company is legally liable for any loss of or injury to your possessions during transit. It’s also liable for loss and damage while its crews are physically touching your items in fulfillment of any other Dallas moving services you selected. Such services should be noted on the bill of lading: packing, unpacking, disassembly and reassembly, for instance.

There are, however, limits to your moving company’s liability. Those limits are established by the federal Surface Transportation Board’s Released Rates Order. You can get your hands on a current copy of it here.

The important thing is, know what options you have for the protection of your belongings. And know your Dallas moving company. Just because a mover puts it out that his firm is “fully insured and bonded” is no pledge that your possessions themselves are automatically covered. By the same token, your local mover being associated with a leading national van line is no unassailable pledge that you’re protected either. In both events, you could be forced to purchase added third-party liability insurance. Your mover may offer to sell it to you, but he’s not legally required to sell it to you. Ask questions when you first talk in order to find out  exactly what your course of action should be.

Keep this in mind when you’re researching your various avenues here in Dallas: Two different levels of moving-company liability are relevant to interstate moves – Full Replacement-Value Protection and Waiver of Full Replacement-Value Protection, or Released Value.

 A-1 Freeman Moving Group Dallas Moving Terms Infographic

 

Without doubt, Full Replacement-Value Protection affords you the most thorough coverage. But picking it means your move costs will rise. With this level of liability (subject to allowable exceptions in your mover’s tariff), your mover will either take care of whatever repairs are advisable to reinstate a damaged article to the condition it was in when you first left it with him and his crew … or he’ll don’t mind paying a heftier price. No matter what valuation you and your mover come to terms with, it must be included in your mover’s tariff. Note also that movers are granted authority to limit their Full Replacement-Value liability for loss or damage of pieces valued exceptionally high. Those would be possessions valued at $100 or more per pound, such as jewelry, antiques, silverware, china, oriental rugs, and the like. Seek further details on all this from your mover. In the final analysis, though, it’s your responsibility declare accurately.

If you go for a Waiver of Full Replacement-Value Protection, or Released Value, you will, of course, receive minimal liability protection. But it won’t cost you anything. What this degree of protection does is limit your mover’s liability to no more than 60 cents per pound, per article. Obviously, that won’t give you enough of a reimbursement to replace any item valued at more than 60 cents per pound! Things like stereo equipment, gym equipment, computer hardware, and computer software are therefore considerably more at risk. That’s something to ponder before you sign on the dotted line!

You could, however, have one more option: your current homeowner’s policy. Take a look at it and get together with your insurance agent to discover if there’s anything in it pertaining to coverage of goods during a relocation. If so, you could find the minimum level of mover liability coverage – Released Value – acceptable.

Just make sure you’re clear about what degree of protection your moving company is including in his quote: Full Protection or Released Value. That way, your move won’t punch you with any totally unanticipated surprises!

 

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