Picking Up and Delivering Shipments on the Agreed Dates
You and your mover should agree on the dates that your shipment is to be picked up and delivered before you move. It is your responsibility to determine the date or spread of dates that you require for the pickup and delivery of your shipment. Once determined, it is your mover’s responsibility to perform the pickup and delivery of your shipment on the agreed dates, as stated on your Bill of Lading.
Movers accomplish the pickup and delivery of shipments under two similar but different arrangements: agreed dates and guaranteed dates. It is important to understand the difference between these two arrangements.
Agreed Pickup and Delivery Dates
Unless you have requested guaranteed service, movers are required to transport your shipment within what the regulations (49 CFR 375.1) define as “reasonable dispatch.”
This means that your mover is required to accomplish the pickup and delivery of your shipment on the dates you have requested, subject to circumstances which could have not been foreseen or conditions that are beyond the control of the mover which might cause delay.
While your mover will make every effort to see that your shipment is serviced on time, delays due to weather, highway construction, and mechanical breakdown do occur. Also, your shipment will frequently be transported along with several other shipments on a large tractor-trailer. Delays to your shipment can occur if another customer changes his or her plans on an earlier shipment that is already scheduled on the same truck.
If a delay does occur, and as a result you have expenses that you otherwise would not have had, you may be able to recover a portion of those expenses by filing an inconvenience or delay claim with your mover. It is important to understand however, that under the reasonable dispatch provisions, your mover is under no contractual obligation to compensate you for your delay claim. Depending upon the circumstances, your mover may choose to reimburse you for some of your expenses, but the mover is not required to do so. The mover is not required by the bill of lading (contract), by the tariff, or by any federal regulation to pay the expenses that you have claimed.
Guaranteed Pickup and Delivery Dates
If it is critical that your move be performed on specific dates (to meet landlord requirements, real estate closing dates, or job or school-related dates), you may want to consider a service option offered by many movers called Guaranteed Pickup and Delivery Service.
Under this option, you enter into an agreement with your mover that provides for your shipment to be picked up and delivered on specific guaranteed dates. If the mover fails to provide the service as agreed, you are entitled to be compensated at a predetermined daily rate or to be reimbursed for a portion of your expenses.
If your shipment was transported under the guaranteed pickup and delivery provisions, you must still file a claim with your mover if your shipment was delayed. Generally, such claims must be filed within 30 days of delivery.