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Furniture Removalists

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gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Furniture Removalists
    Posted: 18/March/2012 at 11:03
Moved interstate last year and used a furniture removalist that was a member of a well none association that claims you will be in safe hands if you use one of their member's to move. The removalist failed completely with regards to adhering to the Code of Conduct set down by the association. We made a written complaint to the association yet regardless of all the paperwork (contract,condition's etc)that should have been supplied prior to moving the association made false claim's against our complaint and believed everything the removalist had to say. Because the member pays a bond to be an associated member it clearly looked like they were keeping their member happy instead of going by the facts. Can my family somehow hold the association accountable for their actions and a Duty of Care they should of had. I have EVERY original document to back our case.Our move cost us $7,000+ instead of $4,000. Any help would be much appreciated.   

MartinO View Drop Down
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  Quote MartinO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 11:50
So what did they not do that you believe they should have done?

Forget the paperwork at this point, did the furniture get to where it was intended? Did all of it arrive? Was there any significant damage? Were there significant delays what were not due to floods etc.?

And finally, you mention last year, how long ago was this move, because even if you had a claim you may have left it too long.
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 12:35
Furniture was off loaded into storage at another associated removalist's depot due to access cut to our new house by flooding. Due to no contract condition's being provided we were unaware this could take place as stated in section 5.1 of the condition's. We were provided no contract to sign which when we would have signed would have indicated condition's were sighted by me and my wife. We verbally stated to removalist there were no conditon's attached to emails of quote's that they provided prior to uplift of goods.
The association held their own internal tribunal into our complaint. They said they had sighted a signed document that the removalist provided that had our signature's on it, to which I replied may I see that document/contract to which they said I am not entitled to that information. If there is a piece of paper that has my signature on it what why am I not allowed to see it? They even claim the removalist paid for the storage at the depot where our gear was dropped yet we have a receipt for the storage. All paperwork that should have been provided before hand was waiting with our belongings after it was dropped off at the second depot. They dropped our belongings and took off before we could get there that day.

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 12:39
The date our belongings were offloaded into storage at second removalist was 11/01/2011.

MartinO View Drop Down
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  Quote MartinO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 12:44
As I said forget the paperwork, it is not relevant to the substantive matter.

If your house or approaches were flooded they needed to do something, or would you have rather they off loaded on the side of the road as near as they could get to your house.

Again:
1) Did the furniture get to where it was intended?
2) Did all of it arrive?
3) Was there any significant damage?
4) Were there significant delays what were not due to floods etc.?
And one further,
5) Did you take any additional insurance to cover natural disasters etc?
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gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 13:01
No, all of our gear belongings did not get to our house. The rest eventually got to where intended after paying another $2,500. The removalist has since gone into liquidation and when I finally tracked him down via getting his phone number he verbally told me he will send his bikie mates around to sought me out and that he has sold the rest of my belongings that did not make it to our house. We had insurance for our possesions mainly the fridge, lounge etc not for delay's from weather. Water damage to our bed's due to removalist not wrapping in plastic as asked. No contract, no condition's of contract, no insurance put in place before we drove interstate, no signed goods inventory before we left. The association are happy to take annual bond from the removalist for them to be a member yet when all the paperwork that the removalist is required to have in place prior to uplift of goods just isn't relevant. Why are they taking money and not backing up their own rules and regulation's? Only delay was the floods.

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 13:06
I understand what your saying and agree my belongings are better off in storage, but how is that you show the association all of the info pointing to what the removalist should have supplied and had in place before the move yet they turn around and say "sorry the removalist doesn't have to abide by the paperwork this time". What exactly are they putting their hand out for money for?

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 13:32
I know I keep referring to the paperwork that should have been supplied, I just don't any other way to feel about the whole situation. It just seems like this association can twist our complaint completely around on us, change paperwork, withhold paperwork, make us feel like we are trying to pull a scam, yet we try and show them what evidence we have to back our claim's and they just laugh at us.

MartinO View Drop Down
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  Quote MartinO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 14:41
I guess the question really is why when you signed up for this move you did not request a copy of everything? Or alternatively not allow them to remove your belongings from the house till you had this documentation?

Now I have said several times, forget the paperwork and deal with the substantive matters, there is a reason for that.

If you were to take this to court, and the case was easy and short it may cost you $5,000 but if you were to bring up missing paperwork the cost would be likely to go up by a factor of 10. You would also run the risk of having the judge throw the case out and award the others sides costs against you. Hence my request to you to forget the paperwork.

Also it seems that you are working under a misapprehension that because you sign up with an organisation that is a member of a national organisation you some how have some extra level of protection.

This membership is there as an advertising tool, people think by using the services of a member they are better off, actually they pay more because these organisations cost the member companies money to join and retain membership. Someone has to pay, and the only source of income is the customer.

Further companies see it an advantage to join, because it saves them work, dissatisfied customers are shunted off to the organisation who run the complaint through their files and select the appropriate, tough luck letter for the reply.

Cynical I know, but unless you wish to throw good money after bad you are going to have to live with it. At least you're forewarned for your next move.

If the company had lost or damaged your furniture, and refused to compensate you I would have taken a different approach. However you should make a complaint to the police over the threat, but the chances are that as it was not specific perhaps nothing can be done there either. 'Sorting you out' could mean anything as opposed to saying, 'Break your legs or smash your face in' But you have the specific details so make the complaint if you believe it may be acted on.





Edited by MartinO - 18/March/2012 at 14:48
I am NOT a lawyer. Anything said is NOT legal advice.

Please post your legal questions in a forum rather than sending a PM. Thanks.

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 15:09
I understand where your coming from and YES we requested paperwork be sorted out before left. The amount of emails we have that show how slow the responses were from the removalist in question (Quote's/receipt's/condition's etc)and the notice of intention to leave 2days before our belongings did. I worked up until 3days before we left, fixed our cars and got kids ready for the trip. The removalist withheld ALL paperwork until we got to Queensland and going by the website the association indicates that paperwork needs to be signed and finalised before uplift. Is it not misleading advertising to say your member's will abide by rules and regulations and they do the complete opposite? I suppose that might be more in line with what I am trying to get at. I was verbally told by the Executive Director that the removalist was in the wrong yet when it came time to review our written complaint it's like he got bullied into a corner by someone on the inside and forced to say the complete opposite. Is it not called a "bride" when someone pays you to say what they want to hear regardless. It looks like they get paid to say "Hey look at us were an association,we have 350+ members, your safe with us". I sincerly appreciate your time and help on the matter MartinO.

MartinO View Drop Down
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  Quote MartinO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18/March/2012 at 18:11
OK your next step if you wish to proceed is to engage a solicitor to pursue this removalist for the extra payment and for any losses or damage that was incurred. You do not go after them for the missing paperwork, they will produce it if they believe you have signed away any of your rights. If this does go to court, your solicitor will obtain an order for the paperwork if it happens to be needed to prove your case.

However I'm not sure if you are chasing a lost cause. You mentioned that the firm has gone into liquidation, not sure if you mean the firm who did the job for you or the subcontractor they employed to store your goods. Your suit is with the firm that you engaged not the other firm. If your contractor is in liquidation you may not get anything even if you prove your case.

But be aware you may be throwing good money after bad whichever way it goes.
I am NOT a lawyer. Anything said is NOT legal advice.

Please post your legal questions in a forum rather than sending a PM. Thanks.

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19/March/2012 at 14:12
Hi MartinO Just following up from your post at 6pm last night.
I have all original paperwork that was meant to be signed and supplied prior to our move.No paperwork is lost that is what I am confused about.
As stated on the associations website the removalist must have a signed contract, insurance sorted out prior to goods being picked up and a signed goods inventory at the very least. We arrived in Queensland and our gear was a day behind us. When the owner of the company found out his driver couldn't get to our house he said he will call us first thing the next morning before anything is taken off of the truck where the driver is camping the night.Guess what no phone call, driver has his phone off and our gear is taken off the truck at the second depot and the truck take's off before we can assess our belonging's. There waiting for us is an unsigned inventory,a tax invoice (only thing that resembles a contract,our insurance paperwork that was offered to us whilst on the road to Queensland. We have a receipt for paying the storage the association claim's the removalist paid for yet not of these items mattered to the association. All against their operating condition's. We showed the Executive Director all of this and that is why I asked to see a so called signed document by us. They don't have one that is why. We took the removalist to VCAT and won but he has nothing in his name to be able to cease, it's in his son's name now.Where is the association's Duty of Care, who do they answer to?

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19/March/2012 at 14:29
The removalist that we first paid is the one that went into liquidation and turns out that he has been to taken to VCAT several times and still owes other interstate removalists money. He obviously flew under the association's radar or they were aware of his treatment with customers and were more interested in their member's bond.If they rule against the removalist they will probably lose their member hey. That's the way it looks like it played out. When the association looked at our complaint they kept changing the date of the hearing for the complaint.Dragged out for close to 3months just enough time for the removalist to go into liquidation and put his remaining assets into his son's name.

MartinO View Drop Down
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  Quote MartinO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19/March/2012 at 18:27
That looks like one to put down to experience, if he is in liquidation it may be a case of throwing good money after bad. However if you really want to sink the boot in (and I wouldn't blame you) go for it.

Too many shonky businessmen out there.

Let us know what your solicitor says.
I am NOT a lawyer. Anything said is NOT legal advice.

Please post your legal questions in a forum rather than sending a PM. Thanks.

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19/March/2012 at 20:37
Thanks again MartinO. I will let you know how I go. Feel a lot better already having someone on the outside of the matter listen and give their view on the situation. Just makes me mad when the big blokes walk all over the little blokes. I do stop myself sometimes and realise how many people lost a lot during the floods. That tends to put things into perspective.

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  Quote WellsMorgan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21/March/2012 at 17:31
Please tell me this isn't an associated company of backloads.com?

Many of these removalist companies are two dollar companies and they phoenix all the time.

There is well know Lawyer in Melbourne who operate many of these removalist websites and once the debts gets to high, he moves acorss to another one.

Very very dangerous suing Removalist companies unless they are the bigones like Ansett Ridgeways etc.

Also you have the issue of the old "we are not common carriers" and all due care and responsibility but no liability. So you have to get them in negligence which is not easy.

Just be careful before you sue if you do, run ASIC searches look at the company and see if it has charges, or any activity which means it may have assets or money? Otherwise you can end up with a judgement against a $2 company.
All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing...

gomez View Drop Down
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  Quote gomez Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21/March/2012 at 20:01
Hi WellsMorgan, Sorry for the late reply. No this company is not associated with backloads.com. I've heard some bad stories about this backloads.com. The company I was having troubles with has since gone into liquidation. Family member's I have in Bendigo keep an eye on the gentleman that did the wrong thing by me and my family. The rather large removals association (you should have no trouble working out who they are)
that had him as a member thought it best to believe everything he had to say regardless. His son now has three business's in his name in Bendigo courtesy of his dad putting everything he had remaining assets wise into his name so me and all the other people chasing can't touch him. My good friend KARMA will get him.LOL.

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