For many people, their car is one of the most valuable assets so it’s no wonder they are concerned about the safety of shipping their vehicle. This is a reasonable concern and one of the main reasons why it is so important to research auto shipping companies before turning your vehicle over to them. Many people assume that the car shipping company is responsible for damage or theft but they may be surprised to find that not all companies have a policy that covers the vehicle while it’s in transport. Some auto shipping companies might even have you sign a waiver negating them of any responsibility for potential damage or theft. Therefore, it’s always important to double check the car shipping company’s policy prior to signing a contract, Here are a few other insurance tips you should consider to make sure your vehicle is protected in the event of theft.
Ask the Shipping Company About their Policy
Every auto shipping company should be happy to provide you with a copy of their insurance coverage so you know exactly what they will cover. Be sure to specify whether the car is covered during transport as well or just during the loading and unloading process. Once you have a copy of the insurance policy, make sure to get a signed copy to keep for yourself. Before signing any contracts you need to have proof of insurance in writing.
Check with Your Own Auto Insurance Company
Depending on your policy, your own auto insurance might cover your vehicle while it’s in transport but you can never assume this. You also want to ask whether this coverage is automatic or if you have to supply the auto shipping company with any form of notification of this coverage.
The Bill of Lading
Every auto shipment carrier should present you with a Bill of Lading upon delivery of your vehicle. This is a document that basically shows that your vehicle arrived in good condition. Obviously, if your car is stolen you will not have a Bill of Lading and this should be reported to the insurance company immediately.
Where to File a Complaint
If your vehicle is stolen during transport you will need to report it to your insurance company right away. If the auto shipping company is not cooperating with you and your vehicle was transported across state lines, you may also file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Frequently Asked Questions
Honest Answers to Your Car Shipping Questions
Yes, we always ask for your specific pickup and delivery addresses, if the carrier can get right to the addresses you provide, they will. If the addresses that you give us are not safely accessible for a Multi-car carrier, however, you will need to make arrangements with the driver to meet at a nearby location where the carrier can safely get in and out.
People do it all the time (rarely for free) but the official answer is no.
Not what you wanted to hear, we know, but that is the honest answer.
We are not licensed to broker the shipment of household goods and, likewise, no car carrier that operates in the USA is licensed to transport them from state to state either. Despite what you might be being told by other car shipping companies you may speak with.
Remember, at the end of the day we're all salespeople, and the true answer to this question is not a great selling point.
You will hear a lot of companies tell you that you can put up to 100 pounds of items in the trunk, but that is not entirely true. That fact is that items of that amount are fairly common and the department of transportation is probably not going to split hairs and fine the trucker over items of that amount, provided they are not over their weight limit. They could fine them, however, if they see a vehicle stuffed full of personal items so the car carrier will most likely try to negotiate something with you to cover themselves against any costs they could incur. It's not something we can build into your contract though.
We have a short and helpful video on this topic in our user videos.
Only in rare cases and car carriers will usually charge a premium to make it happen.
All dates given by car carriers are typically estimates and projections.
For this reason (and to keep your cost down) we ask that you build in some flexibility and give us the earliest possible date you would be WILLING to release the vehicle, even though it may not be your preferred date.
We'll put you in direct contact with your car carrier and the driver will also typically call you the afternoon or evening before your pick up and delivery (they won't just show up unannounced, and if they do we want to hear about it). However, car carriers are out on the road battling traffic, weather and any number of other factors that can and do throw them off of their pickup and delivery projections from time to time.
If the projected dates we give you come and you are unable to make contact with your carrier, please call our office immediately so that we may help resolve the situation.
The average transit time from pick up to delivery on any vehicle going coast to coast will average 7 to 10 days. From there you can figure your transit time based on how far your vehicle is traveling, i.e. from either coast to the Midwest might average 3-7 days.
Even better, we do not even ask for payment until we have you confirmed for pickup by a safe, reliable, fully insured, direct car carrier. If for any reason you do not ship your car with the carrier that we arrange for you, there is no fee.
The fees paid directly to the carrier however, (in most cases, their fees are not paid until your vehicle is delivered) are not directly controlled by us, so any requests for a refund of the carrier's portion would need to be addressed with the carrier directly.
Of course! And you are always backed by our Damage Free Guarantee policy.
Part of what you pay us for is to verify that the car carrier that we put you on is covered by the proper amount of insurance and that everything is up to date.
There is never any additional cost to you for this coverage, and their insurance is always primary.