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Miami, Florida 33132

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Moving Contracts and Paperwork

Which Types of Moving Paperwork, Contracts, and Documents Are Essential?
Streamline your move with expert advice on contracts and paperwork. Ensure a hassle-free relocation – get started now!

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Moving Contracts And Paperwork

Which Types of Moving Paperwork, Contracts, and Documents Are Essential?

Moving, whether across town or long-distance, can be quite the undertaking. Opting for a professional moving company simplifies the process, sparing you the heavy lifting. As you embark on your move, you must familiarize yourself with crucial paperwork, documents, and forms to ensure a smooth transition.

Before we dive deep into the details of the text, we’ll categorize the documentation needed for your move into the two most important groups.

  • Local moving paperwork
  • Long-distance moving paperwork

Local moving paperwork and documentation

First, let’s start with inventory documentation. This moving document is generated during the loading phase. The mover has a responsibility to include any damaged items in the list. Once the inventory is compiled, the customer and the mover must sign every page.

Before loading onto the truck, the movers will recount the items and affix a unique number sticker. Before loading, the movers will examine and record the condition of each item in the Condition at Origin section.

Long-distance paperwork and documentation

Inventory documentation for a move that will take you across the border is generated during loading. The mover is responsible for including any damaged items in this list. Once the inventory is compiled, the customer and the mover must sign every page. Before loading the boxes onto the truck, the movers will thoroughly recount all items and attach a unique number sticker. The movers will carefully inspect and document the condition of each item in the Condition at Origin section.

Before you put pen to paper, double-check that all items being transported are listed and that any damages are estimated correctly. If a customer believes there is an error in the assessment, it’s crucial to inform the mover before signing the document.

Moving paperwork and documentation

The Most Important Moving Documentation

This section will address some of the most important documents you will need to ensure a smooth and trouble-free move.

The top priority is ensuring your possessions arrive safely and intact at your new address. Additionally, we want you, our valued client, to be happy and satisfied with all our services. Hiring professional packers and movers means you will have peace of mind, knowing your belongings are always safe.

We recommend becoming familiar with the following documents and terminology. We’ll introduce them to you in a straightforward and user-friendly manner.

Written estimate (job acceptance form)

This document represents the estimate provided by our sales team during the booking process. Please note that this estimate is not a contractual agreement. You should refer to the Bill of Lading for contract details.

Two primary types of written estimates are provided during or after booking. They are called binding and non-binding.

Binding estimate

Can the price on the binding estimate change? The short answer would be yes. A binding estimate is not a fixed bid or contract. While ‘binding’ may seem rigid, it only binds the specific goods and services cited in writing.

If additional items are moved, or extra services are requested, the final price will adjust accordingly, even if the estimate was labeled ‘binding.’ A binding estimate may be revised on the pickup date before any work begins to account for other services or transported items.

Non-binding estimate

A non-binding estimate provides an estimated total cost for the entire move based on the estimated shipment weight and any additional services requested. It offers a general idea of the move’s cost.

Written estimate

Revision of an estimate

Whether it’s a binding or non-binding estimate, the price can be adjusted either upwards or downwards before the work starts.

If, before or on the scheduled pickup day, more items are added or something gets altered, the moving company has two options:

  1. Proceed with the job, including the additional items. In this case, the shipper must pay either 10% more than the initial estimate (following the 110% rule) for a non-binding estimate or the complete binding estimate, with the remaining balance billed after a 30-day postponement.

  2. The moving company and the shipper may agree to conduct a revised written estimate (a New Onsite Visual Estimate) or a rescission document before loading or initiating the job.


Special note – Any changes to the estimate require mutual agreement, and these changes must be made before loading items onto the truck.

Bill of Lading

The Bill of Lading is the agreement between a moving company and a customer. Either party can cancel the move anytime before signing this document.

This paper, given by the carrier, acknowledges that your stuff is loaded or unloaded. You might be asked to sign an unfinished document before loading your things. It should have all the info except the final weight and costs.

Full Value Protection

Full Value Protection means your mover is responsible for replacing anything lost or damaged during your move. It’s a thorough but pricier way to protect your stuff. Unless you pick the Released Value option, which we’ll explain next, your mover automatically gives you this high level of protection.

If something goes wrong while we’re moving your things, such as getting lost, damaged, or destroyed, we’ll offer to do one of these for each item:

  • Fix it
  • Swap it with something similar
  • Pay you for the repair cost or what it’s worth now


But there’s a catch: for precious items, such as things worth over $100 per pound (think jewelry, delicate dishes, or expensive furs), our responsibility is limited. However, if you tell us about these valuable items on a document, we’ll still take care of them.

Released Value Protection

Released Value Protection is a wallet-friendly choice because it won’t cost you anything extra. Movers offer it for free, but here’s the deal: it comes with limited coverage. With this option, the moving company is only on the hook for a maximum of 60 cents for every pound of your stuff.

If you’re up for this option, you must put your John Hancock on a specific statement in the Bill of Lading or contract. Remember, your reimbursement is tied to your item’s weight, not how much it’s worth. If you don’t pick Released Value Protection, your shipment will automatically have Full Value Protection.

Moving Paperwork, Contracts, and Documents

What Are Your Responsibilities as a Customer?

  • Read all moving documents carefully.
  • Ensure your availability during both the pickup and delivery windows. 
  • Inform the mover if something changes (date, additional items).
  • In case of loss, damage, or delays, promptly initiate claims with the moving company.

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