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Couple Pays $30K For Cross-Country Move, Items Arrive Waterlogged

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DENTON (CBSDFW.COM) - JT and Carol Nelson thought they did everything right to prepare for their move from Minnesota to Texas.

"We were anxious to get our of the cold weather so Dallas sounded fabulous," said Carol Nelson.

They expected a few things to get bumped or bruised in the move but nothing like what happened.

"I didn't really expect to see it quite this catastrophic," said JT.

The Nelson's hired All State Van Lines Relocation out of Florida who contracted the job to Best Price Moving and Storage out of Illinois.

"We didn't pick the least expensive, didn't pick the most expensive," said Carol.

The company would pack up all their belongings and store all of their things for 6 months while their new Texas home was under construction.

The Nelson's received insurance through a third party and paid extra to have a few things crated for extra protection.

They paid a total of $30,000.

"We really thought we did everything they recommended to make this a good move," said Carol.

But when their belongings arrived, the Nelson's said they were crushed.

"Every time I opened a box, I can't believe this is happening," said Carol.

The Nelson's showed CBS11 pictures of broken items and things thrown into boxes that weren't wrapped or secured.

"The box is filled with silverware, filled with knives, nothing was wrapped," said Carol.

She said the worst part was finding family heirlooms in pieces.

"A crystal bowl my father gave me 30 years ago when I got married. Irreplaceable," said Carol in tears.

They said the strangest part was how many items arrived with water damage.

"Boxes were dripping wet, mattress is dripping water, leather couch has mold growing on it," said Carol.

They said somehow in storage or during the move, many of their items -- from a Tempur-Pedic mattress to teak furniture -- got wet.

"We did not sign up to have our goods, rained on, flooded on, pipe leaked. I don't know," said Carol.

The Nelson's estimated damages at $20,000 and said insurance covered $5,000 for repairs.

"They denied some claims as items weren't properly packed. The insurance company said, 'please note under your policy, water damage is not covered,' " said Carol.

The Nelsons contacted All State Van Lines Relocation to make up the difference.

"Their offer was $162 based on their contract of 60 cents per pound," said Carol.

The Nelsons said they weren't offered full value protection so they chose released value protection and purchased insurance from a third party; meaning All State Van Lines Relocation isn't obligated by law to give them anymore money.

Under Federal guidelines, the mover is only responsible for .60 cents per pound.

"As a consumer you have no regulatory protection," said JT.

All State Van Lines Relocation gave the Nelson's an additional $200.

"The .60 a pound doesn't make sense when there is obvious abuse, when there is not proper packing, not proper storage," said Nelson.

They filed a complaint with the Department of Transportation and the Attorney General's office in Florida and Illinois.

All State Van Lines Relocation released the following statement that reads in part:

Please know our goal is to always coordinate a smooth and successful
relocation for all of our consumers. We understand that an unfortunate
incident could occur during the transit of the customers goods such as
damage during a long distance service so we will always recommend
additional coverage options through a preferred vendor.

I am happy to report the Nelsons did take our recommendation to acquire a
high coverage amount policy from our preferred vendor

I have reviewed the file and seen that our team at All State Van Lines
Relocation has advocated for the customer to receive above the settlement
amount that the policy purchased called for and were successful.

We are showing that had increased the settlement to
$6,765.31 minus deductible, an additional claim was processed with the
carrier for $162.00 and our office added $200.00 to the carriers settlement
in good faith.

The Nelson's filed a complaint with the Department of Transportation and the Attorney General's office in Florida and Illinois.

(©2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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