Protection For Damages

Option 1: Full Value Coverage

United’s Full-Value Coverage program provides protection for your household belongings, up to the amount of coverage you declare.  The Full-Value Coverage program has three options:

  • Full Coverage (no deductible)
  • $250 deductible
  • $500 deductible

With a deductible, you assume the first $250 or $500 of loss or damage.  Regardless of the Full-Value Coverage option selected, depreciation is not a factor in determining the replacement value of the lost or damaged item.  When you choose a Full-Value Coverage option, claims are settled via United’s choice by:

  1. Paying full cost of repairs (minus any deductible);
  2. Replacing with a like article (minus any deductible); or
  3. Paying the current market replacement value of the item (minus any deductible).

Note: Keep in mind that when an article is replaced or the carrier pays you the full current market replacement value, you must relinquish the damaged item to United for salvage.

The carrier’s total liability for loss or damage will be up to the amount you declare as the value of the shipment.  However, the minimum value declared must be at least $5 multiplied by the weight of the shipment.  There is an additional charge for Full-Value Coverage options.  The charge is based upon the value you declared and the deductible option you selected.  Ask your move coordinator or salesman for price information on Full-Value Coverage.

Option 2: Released Rate Liability

With this type of valuation, United’s maximum liability for loss or damage to each article in the shipment is 60 cents multiplied by the weight of the article.  For example, if a broken lamp weighed 10 pounds, the potential settlement would be $6 (60 cents x 10 pounds).  If the article could be repaired for less than this amount, the carrier may elect to repair it.  Released Rate Liability is the basic liability level and is provided at no charge.

Comparison Chart

To illustrate the carrier’s liability under the protection plan programs, United created the following chart based on a 7,000-pound shipment.

Protection Plan Program Carrier Liability Level for Total Shipment
Full-Value Coverage (no deductible) $35,000 minimum* (7,000 lbs x $5 = $35,000)
Full-Value Coverage ($250 deductible) $34,750 minimum* (after $250 deductible)
Full-Value Coverage ($500 deductible) $34,500 minimum* (after $500 deductible)
Released Rate Liability $4,200 maximum (7,000 lbs x $.60 = $4,200)

*This reflects the minimum amount of coverage required in the example of a 7,000 lb. Shipment.

High Value Inventory Form

If your shipment will contain any articles of  “extraordinary value,” notify your move coordinator or salesman before packing or moving day.  In the moving industry, items worth more than $100 per pound are considered to be articles of extraordinary value.  Although you may have other articles of extraordinary value, this list should help you identify some of your belongings which might fall into this classification.

  • Antiques
  • Art Collections
  • Cameras/Photos
  • China
  • Coin Collections
  • Computer Software
  • Crystal
  • Currency
  • Figurines
  • Firearms
  • Furs
  • Jewelry
  • Manuscripts
  • Oriental Rugs
  • Precious Metals
  • Silver
  • Stereos
  • Stones or Gems
  • Tapestries
  • TV’s

To assure that these articles are not limited to minimal liability, complete the High-Value Inventory form.  (If you don’t have one, contact your United sales representative.)  Be sure to document any signatures, serial numbers or manufacturer marks.  Once you have filled out the High-Value Inventory form, you need to sign it.  The form should be completed on all shipments even though there may be no articles of extraordinary value.

When United provides packing services, give the High-Value Inventory form to the lead packer.  If you are doing your own packing, properly wrap and place items in cartons, but do not tape any boxes closed which contain articles of extraordinary value.  On moving day, the van operator will inspect the articles and seal these boxes in your presence.

Be sure the inventory numbers for cartons containing high-value items are transferred to the High-Value Inventory form.  This will help you identify the boxes during delivery when you inspect them with the van operator.  In addition, you might want to record high-value items on videotape or take photographs.

In the event of a claim, any settlement is limited to the value of the article—not to exceed the declared value of the entire shipment.  Claims are still settled based on the type of valuation selected.  If you choose a coverage program which has a deductible, this would still apply for articles of extraordinary value.  It’s important to note that verification of ownership and proof of value will be required for such articles prior to settlement.

When articles of extraordinary value in your shipment are not listed on the High-Value Inventory form, the carrier’s liability is limited to $100 per pound per article – provided the shipment was released at a value greater than 60 cents per pound per article.  Shipments for which the declared value is 60 cents per pound per article are not covered by the provisions applicable to articles of extraordinary value.

Declaring Your Valuation

To obtain the valuation coverage for your shipment, you must:

  • Select the Full-Value program you desire and the declared value for your shipment.
  • Complete and sign the box marked “Valuation” on the Bill of Lading prior to the loading of your shipment
  • Sign the “Extraordinary (Unusual) Value Article Declaration” box on the Bill of Lading, if applicable to your shipment.

Remember, you cannot change the valuation coverage you selected once the loading process has begun.

You must select the valuation coverage, and you must write your choice on the Bill of Lading in your own handwriting.  If the Bill of Lading is not filled in, your shipment will be considered released under the Pound-Weight Value provision.  The maximum value of your shipment would then be the actual weight of the shipment multiplied by $1.25.  You will be responsible for the accompanying charge.  To avoid this charge, you must release the shipment at a value not exceeding 60 cents per pound per article on the Bill of Lading.

What Valuation is Not

Valuation is not insurance. Valuation is a tariff level of carrier liability in the event of the loss or damage to your goods while they are part of an interstate shipment.  The tariffs may contain other conditions regarding the valuation coverage discussed in the brochure.  Valuation as a means of determining liability is unique to carriers.  Valuation does not cover:

  • An “Act of God” (earthquake, flood, hurricane, tornado, etc)
  • Hostile or warlike actions
  • Defects or inherent nature of the property (changes in atmospheric conditions such as temperature or humidity)
  • Acts or omissions of the shipper such as neglecting to prepare an item for shipment
  • Acts arising from riots, civil commotion, strikes, labor disturbances, or lockouts

If you want coverage for the kinds of liability valuation does not cover, contact your own insurance representative about transit/storage insurance coverage.

Valuation and Storage

Temporary Storage (Storage-in-transit)

Storage-In-Transit, or SIT, is the temporary storage of your household goods in a warehouse, pending further transportation.  Your belongings may be placed in SIT at either the origin or the destination location.  While your belongings are in SIT, they remain part of the interstate shipment.  For shipments in SIT:

  • The SIT storage period cannot exceed 180 days.
  • The Full-Value Coverage option you selected and the declared value applicable to your shipment during interstate transportation remains the same while your belongings are in SIT.  However, there is an additional charge for the extended valuation coverage while the goods are in SIT.

Permanent Storage (long-term)

Your belongings may be held in permanent storage at a warehouse.  Typically, your belongings would be placed in permanent (or long-term) storage after the expiration of the 180-day period of SIT storage.  Permanent storage also would apply at the conclusion of the interstate transportation when storage of all or part of your shipment is expected to be lengthy, and there will be no further interstate transportation of your shipment.  For shipments in permanent storage:

  • The shipment of your belongings under the Bill of Lading terminates, and a new storage contract is entered into with the warehouse company where your goods are to be stored.
  • Liability for loss or damage to the goods shifts from the carrier to the warehouse company for the period your belongings are in permanent storage.
  • Generally, the coverage available for goods in permanent storage contains exclusions for articles of extraordinary value.  Additional exclusions or limitations may apply to the coverage for your belongings while in permanent storage.  Ask a representative of the warehouse company for an explanation of the coverage available and any applicable exclusions or limitations.