Understanding Inventory Systems
Once you make a phone call to a moving company, they will send an estimator to your home to do an inventory. Once you’ve accepted his estimate, he must prepare an order for service.
Remember, this is not a contract because you can cancel the order within three days. Though you may have to pay a cancellation fee once you agreed to a cancellation charge in your non-binding estimate. The FMCSA requires an order for service that include your mover’s name, address, and USDOT number; pickup and delivery dates; contact information; terms and conditions of charges and estimated charges.
The bill of lading is the actual contract and it must be presented to you by your estimator or on the day of your move by your mover. It must have the same information as the order for service. By law it must include the moving company name, address, contact information, the form of payment at delivery, the identification number of the moving company vehicle, evidence of any independent insurance coverage for the shipment, and pickup and delivery dates. The bill of lading, the moving estimate, the order for service, and the inventory of your items, should all be attached
Also, a the bill of lading copy must accompany your shipment anytime it is in the mover’s possession, including during storage. You should also keep a copy with at all times.
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