In August 1998 I moved from Indianapolis, IN where I had been working as a research fellow for Eli Lilly for 3 years to Hamburg Germany with an international moving company NorthAmerican Moving. Unfortunately I had to pay the moving myself because the new employer is the University of Hamburg and would not pay for it.
(This automatically transvers me in a situation with no power, as it does not has any consequence if I am satisfied with the moving outcome or not) I packed 18 boxes with clothes and linen and handed over a mountain bike worth 1000$ that was 2 years old and that I had hardly had the chance to use.
They told me I did not need to get a box or wrap the bike, they would take care of it. The sales agent told me that the insurance amount of 6000 $ for replacement he put down was enough as a coverage. As I had the impression with the bike this sounded not quite right I raised it to 8000 $
The boxes and the bike were delivert on 11.17.98 after about 1 month in storage in Hamburg. Three boxes were missing. I tried to find out what happend and after a lot of talking on the phone with the German moving company which took over in Bremerhafen, I found out that the wooden container the smaller boxes were packed into was allready badly damaged in Baltimore habour storge, but nobody did bother to check if any boxes were missing. Apparently sombody had forced open the wooden box and took whatever he was able to get a hold of.
I have similar report from a friend that moved from Indianapolis to England. His stereo was stolen out of the containers. But he had more luck as his move was organized and payed for through human resources of Glaxo-Wellcome. Though the moving company tried to only partly replace the losses, too after human resources interfered they paid. After unpacking all other boxes I sent a list with the missing items to the insurance company (The claim was 6640$) My bike had been wraped in paperpads in two pieces. The front wheel and the rest of the bike. Unfortunatly I did not put it together and use the bike until spring So that I did not become aware that the wheels were badly out of disformed and need to be replaced. Also, ignorant as they were trying to get the front wheel off the rest they cut the brake wires with nippers instead of simple and easy manual seperation.
I have tried to get the clothing back, but the moving company was very helpful NorthAmerica Moving was not very helpful in trying to find the lost boxes as I was very interested in getting them back but as they neglecting their duty from the beginning to take care of my goods on the move I was naive to expect more. And the same is true for the associated Insurance company. Instead of settling this very disappointing out come of my move they reject to pay the full amout of my claims.
They asked me for some bills and receipts for the clothing to prove declaration of value. It is a ridicolous demand as nobody keeps receips of each underware pant or jeans one buys during a span of 3 years. They did sent me a check of (3468.75 $) after some wild calculation they did told that I was underinsured and could not povide proove. I took a lawery who did sent in complaints. Did not help. I sent in receipt from the clothes I bought here in Germany to replace my lost ones and the laywer also then them to the insurance company. But they are still not willing to expecept my claim.
The incident happend more than a year ago and I do not think it is solved yet.
What do you recommend
contract no 945-802