Are my possessions insured if I do my own packing?
If I pack my own items into boxes and a mover moves my goods are my goods insured?
Yes and No.
If you pack your own cartons and you ship your goods at released value (minimum coverage with no declared value for insurance purposes) your cartons are automatically covered for 60 cents per pound per article.
What this means, is that if you have a carton that is lost and it weighs 40 pounds, you will receive a maximum of $24.00 (40x.60) for the contents of the lost carton.
If you declare a value for insurance purposes and your contents of the carton are noticed as damaged upon arrival at your new home, are your goods covered?
Yes and no.
If your mover has dropped the carton and there is noticeable exterior damage to the carton, liability becomes the movers and the mover is responsible.
In this case it is important to view your cartons for exterior damage as they arrive, open the carton, inspect the goods inside for damage and note the damage on your movers contract or inventory forms so the damage is witnessed and confirmed. You now have a valid claim.
If howeve, there is no physical exterior damage to your cartons and you notice damage to your goods inside the carton upon opening of the carton, your mover will not take responsibility for the damage; as this damage is generally considered caused by poor packing procedures.
However, if your mover packs your carton and you declare a value for insurance purposes and something within the carton is damaged your goods are fully covered.
So we recommend that you have a professional mover pack your cartons if you want insurance coverage; and for those do-it your-selfers watch our packing videos in the packing section of our website to learn proper packing techniques.