Every moving company takes steps to protect your goods from loss or damage. Despite all their efforts, there is always a chance that your goods might get lost or damaged, and in such a case, you have a right for compensation. You also have a legal recourse if you feel you have been billed excessively and this is subject to certain regulations defined by the Arbitration Act of Canada.
The first step in this process is to make a list of things as soon as they were delivered and promptly make a note of any damaged or missing items on the inventory sheet before you sign and hand it over to the driver. This proves the fact that the items were lost or damaged during transit and not due to your handling or your negligence. The next step is to make a written complaint to the moving company stating the items that have been damaged and the compensation you feel is appropriate to offset the damage. The moving company should respond to your complaint within 30 days of receipt. They will either settle the claim for damages or will negotiate the amount of compensation with you. If you are unhappy about the settlement offer or if the moving company has not responded to your complaint, you have a right to arbitration. If the claim is less than $10,000, you can submit it directly for arbitration and in the case of claims over $10,000, you and the moving company should mutually agree for arbitration. The commercial arbitrator can be requested from many sources like the Canadian Arbitration Association or the ADR Institute of Canada. Once it is submitted, the members of the arbitration tribunal will look into the details of the case.
You can also go in for arbitration in the case of a dispute regarding the charges that were billed to you. However, only a few types of disputes can be submitted to the tribunal and these are the charges that were billed only after the goods were delivered and not the charges that were billed at the time of pick-up, transit or delivery.
The arbitration tribunals consists of one or more people who are experienced and have expertise in the field of moving. The procedures and processes for arbitration are defined under the Commercial Arbitration Act. Under the Canadian laws, arbitration tribunals are different from the judicial system and the members of the tribunal can accept the suggestion put forth by either of the parties after reviewing the details of the case. The cost involved in the arbitration process is shared equally by both the parties and it depends to a large extent on the length and the complexity of the case. The location of the arbitration process is at a place that is mutually convenient for both the parties and they should be present during this process. Once the tribunal makes the decision, it is final and binding on both the parties.
This is the best legal resource available to you to claim compensation for lost or damaged goods and for the additional charges that were billed to you by the moving company.