NBC 6 Responds

What to Look Out for When Hiring Movers

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration investigates complaints against interstate movers and brokers

NBC Universal, Inc.

Moving from state to state is stressful enough, but it can easily turn into a nightmare if you hire the wrong company.

Billy Bowers called NBC 6 Responds after his big move across state lines didn’t go as planned. Bowers hired a Broward County company named Gold Standard Moving and Storage, LLC for his move from Georgia to Alabama.

He signed a moving estimate and paid a deposit of $2,310, but on moving day, he said a different company showed up to perform the move.

“One guy in a rental truck from St. Louis arrived and it wasn’t Gold Standard Moving. It was another company I had never heard of,” Bowers said.

Bowers said the new company increased the total price of the move from $5,348 to $11,971. He also said furniture was damaged during the move.

He isn’t the only consumer who reached out to NBC 6 Responds about their interstate move.

We heard from Shameera Bradley, who hired a Pompano Beach company called Complete Vanlines, LLC. She paid a $672 deposit to secure her move from New York to Texas, but said on the day of the move the company didn’t show up.

“He emailed me and said, unfortunately, we had complications that we could not, they were out of our control,” Bradley said.   

Both Bowers and Bradley would later find out the companies they hired were not moving companies. Instead, they hired moving brokers. A moving broker is a company that arranges your items to be transported.

They are essentially a sales team that books your move and sells it to another company. By law, moving brokers do not assume responsibility for your goods and are not authorized to transport.

“They didn’t express themselves as a broker, they expressed themselves as a moving company,” Bradley said.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration investigates complaints against interstate movers and brokers.

“A mover actually hauls the shipments, they have trucks, they have employees that are packing, loading, unloading, etc. for the consumers,” division chief Monique Riddick said.

Riddick works within the agency’s Enforcement Division.

“The way they present themselves on the internet will make a consumer believe that they are the actual mover,” she said.

NBC 6 Responds found phrases like “full service moving company” and pictures of movers on the website for the company Bowers used. But on the bottom of the webpage, you will find a disclaimer that reads “Gold Standard Moving is a federally licensed moving broker. It is not a motor carrier and does not own moving trucks.”

“They need to have a statement on their website that notes they arrange transportation,” Riddick said.

You can find information on moving brokers and moving companies on the FMCSA’s Protect Your Move website. You can find out if a company is registered with the FMCSA if they have complaints filed against them, and the type of complaints.

When NBC 6 Responds searched for information about the companies Bowers and Bradley used, we found hundreds of complaints filed against the companies.

Since 2021, 384 total complaints have been filed with the FMCSA against Gold Standard Moving and Storage, LLC, and 65 complaints against Complete Vanlines, LLC.

Florida’s Attorney General is also investigating complaints against the companies.

The Attorney General's office has an active investigation open against Gold Standard Moving and Storage, LLC after receiving more than 190 complaints against the company. They are also looking into 44 complaints against Complete Vanlines, LLC.

NBC 6 Responds called, emailed and went to listed addresses for these companies, but are still waiting to hear back.

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