Denver, CO – December 9th, 2010 – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently granted a petition by the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA) to require interstate household goods brokers to abide by a number of rules and consumer requirements already in place for household goods carriers.
“Few, if any, consumers understood the distinction between brokers and carriers, leaving them feeling cheated of their rights,” said Linda Bauer Darr, AMSA president and CEO. “This action by the federal government closes a loophole that too many of these middlemen have been exploiting for years. In some cases, brokers connected consumers with fly-by-night rogue operators, posing as movers, and were ripped off.”
According to the American Moving & Storage Association, the new rule includes requirements that brokers:
1) must include their US DOT number in their advertisements and on their websites;
2) must provide the same consumer information brochures as required of interstate household goods carriers;
3) must make clear their policies on deposits, cancellations, and refunds;
and 4) by January 1, 2012, must provide an increased $25,000 surety bond (currently $10,000).Consumers planning a move should take the following BBB advice:
- Check out movers with the Better Business Bureau. BBB reports give information about complaints, time in business, licensing, etc. Visit www.bbb.org.- Do not do business with an intrastate mover that is not licensed with the PUC and do not do business with an interstate mover that is not licensed with the FMCSA. Always verify licenses yourself; do not take the business’ word for it.
- If you hire a moving broker, get the details on who is actually going to do the move and who is responsible for what. Also verify that the broker and the mover meet established and new government requirements.