What is an Interstate Movers’ License?
All interstate moves to or from Aventura are regulated by the federal government, as well as by the individual state where the moving company operates. Licensing requirements can vary significantly from state to state. In Florida, moving companies are governed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, as well as the US Department of Transportation. In Florida, movers need an Interstate Mover’s (IM) number, as well as MV and MR movers if they’re moving long distances. If you’re looking for interstate movers, you’ll need to make sure you hire a company that has the right licensure in Florida. Because it varies from state to state, it can be confusing for consumers.
What Do Florida Interstate Movers Need?
Interstate moving companies in Florida, as well as brokers, must be registered with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) if they are to transport goods across state lines. If a moving company is legitimate, they must explain whether they’re a broker or a mover. Household goods brokers arrange for transportation for a shipment containing your belongings, but they do not actually provide the transportation. Moving companies, however, actually provide trucks that carry your household goods across state lines.
If you’re working with a legitimate interstate moving service, you should expect to receive the following things before your move.
- A written estimate
- A “Ready to Move” brochure, or a web link to said brochure
- Information about the mover’s arbitration program, which pertains to disputing claims for lost, stolen, or damaged goods, or disputing additional charges. As of 1996, interstate movers nationwide are required by law to provide neutral binding arbitration. These requirements were expanded in 2006 to include both disputed loss and damage claims, and disputes over additional charges.
- Written notice about access to the mover’s tariff. The USDOT requires moving companies to make their rates and charges public, in a tariff that details the services they provide, the conditions under which they provide that service, and the prices that they charge.
- Written notice of their process for handling claims.
- A booklet called “Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move”
- Proof of their FMCSA registration
The Florida Motor Carrier Safety Administration advises that you avoid movers and brokers who:
- Can’t provide proof of FCMSA registration
- Insist on cash-only payments
- Refuse to perform a physical survey of your household belongings prior to giving an estimate
Believe it or not, these three things can be signs of “rogue movers,” a problem that the US Department of Transportation has cracked down on in recent years.
The USDOT Crackdown on Rogue Movers
Earlier this year, in January 2016, the USDOT began to crack down on “rogue movers” — moving companies or brokers who are not properly registered and licensed for local, intrastate, or interstate moving. These unscrupulous companies scam consumers through lowball estimates, refusal to deliver household goods, and other fraudulent practices. In December 2015, a grand jury indicted 14 movers in both California and Florida on charges of extortion and fraud.
To avoid falling prey to these rogue moving companies, it’s important to find interstate moving companies that can prove that they’re properly licensed, on both a federal and state level.
At Orange Movers, we’re a fully licensed and certified Florida moving company, and we provide both local and interstate moving services for Aventura residents. To find out more, call us any time, or contact us to get in touch with a helpful representative.