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How to Request Arbitration

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The American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA) is the national trade association of the moving and storage industry. It represents movers, van lines and their agents who are engaged in the interstate transportation of household goods.

One of the primary missions of the Association is to encourage its members to perform in a manner that results in the most efficient and reliable moving and storage services possible. To further this objective, AMSA conducts two programs that are designed to assist our industry's customers if they encounter problems with their mover. These programs are the AMSA Certified Mover and Van Line Program and the Dispute Settlement Program.

AMSA Certified Mover and Van Line Program

The AMSA Certified Mover and Van Line Program was created to promote sound principles and acceptable practices in the moving and storage industry. AMSA Certified Movers and Van Lines are companies that have voluntarily agreed to abide by a Code of Conduct that requires complete disclosure of moving information to consumers, written estimates of charges, timely service, and prompt response to claims and complaints. They have also agreed to arbitrate disputes of up to $5,000 arising from loss or damage to the articles in your shipment. Not all movers participate in this program.

Dispute Settlement (Arbitration) Program

The Dispute Settlement Program ensures that our members comply with the federal requirement that they have a formal arbitration program available to resolve their customers' disputes over lost, damaged or destroyed articles. If you cannot resolve such a dispute with your mover, you may request arbitration to resolve your claim.

Most people who use a professional mover never encounter a problem or file a claim. And, if a claim is filed, it is usually resolved to the consumer's satisfaction in a timely manner. However, some problems are not easily resolved. To assist us in helping you to address your problem, be sure to carefully read the information contained in this section and follow the instructions for submitting a complaint or for requesting arbitration.

Identifying the Type of Complaint

The first step to resolving complaints with your mover is determining what type of complaint you have. Complaints about moving companies usually fall into three (3) different categories.

Delay Claims
A delay claim is the result of a missed pickup date or the late delivery of your shipment. If your shipment was late or delayed, file a delay claim, as explained below, with your mover. If you used an AMSA Certified Mover or Van Line, and your claim is not resolved to your satisfaction, we encourage you to submit your complaint to the AMSA Certified Mover and Van Line Program. Click here for the complaint form.

Billing Disputes
A billing dispute involves the amount the moving company has charged, or if the shipment has not yet been delivered, the additional amount that your mover is requesting before he will perform the delivery of your shipment. If you feel that you have been overcharged, file a claim for overcharge, as explained below, with your mover. If you used an AMSA Certified Mover or Van Line, and your claim is not resolved to your satisfaction, we encourage you to submit your complaint to the AMSA Certified Mover and Van Line Program. Click here for the complaint form.

Loss and Damage Claims
A loss and damage claim is the result of a dispute with your mover regarding the settlement of a claim for loss or damage to your shipment. If articles in your shipment were lost or damaged, file a loss and damage claim with your mover. If your mover ia a member of our association, and your claim is not resolved to your satisfaction, we encourage you to pursue your claim through the AMSA Dispute Settlement Program. Click here to request arbitration.

For more detailed information about the Arbitration Program, click here(pdf).

It is important to note that the Dispute Settlement Program operates under Federal guidelines and is limited in the type of cases that may be arbitrated. Under the program, only loss or damage claims on interstate C.O.D. shipments are subject to mandatory arbitration. If you have a complaint about late pickup or late delivery, or if the dispute is about the quality of service received or the charges due under a binding or non-binding estimate (or any other non-eligible type of dispute) and you used a Certified Mover, we encourage you to process your complaint through the AMSA Certified Mover and Van Line Program, as explained above.





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© Copyright, 2002
American Moving and Storage Association
1611 Duke Street Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: (703) 683-7410 Fax: (703) 683-7527
Email: amconf@amconf.org