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PDFWAC 480-15-630


Every carrier is required to provide a written estimate to every customer prior to moving a shipment of household goods and must issue a written supplemental estimate when required by commission rule or tariff. The carrier must provide estimates by following the requirements set in the commission-published tariff covering household goods movers. The initial estimate may be a binding or nonbinding estimate.
(1) A binding estimate is the promise of a guaranteed cost of a move from the carrier to the customer. The carrier is bound to charge only the amount of the estimate and no more.
(2) A nonbinding estimate is an estimate of the amount the carrier will charge to move a customer's household goods. The customer may pay charges in excess of the estimate.
(3) A supplemental estimate is in addition to any other estimate. A supplemental estimate is required if the circumstances surrounding the move change in a way that causes rates or charges to increase. The customer must accept and sign the supplemental estimate prior to additional work being performed.
(4) A carrier may provide the hourly rate it charges and the amount of time it believes it will take to make the move. A carrier may provide the rate per unit of weight it charges and the total weight it believes a shipment weighs. However, the carrier must provide a written binding or nonbinding estimate before making the move.
(5) A carrier may not conduct a move until it has visually inspected the goods to be shipped, unless the customer completes a website calculation or hard-copy calculation sheet as described in subsection (6) of this section, and the carrier has provided a written binding or nonbinding estimate to the customer.
(6) A carrier may provide an estimate based on a customer-completed website calculation or customer completed hard-copy calculation sheet if:
(a) The estimate contains all of the elements required by the tariff.
(b) The customer electronically "signs" the information provided on the website by entering the customer's name and the date the information was filled out on the screen. The date must be present and must be entered by the customer.
(c) The carrier provides the customer with a current copy of the commission publication, "Consumer Guide to Moving in Washington State."
(d) The estimate discloses at the website or on the hard-copy calculation sheet that:
(i) The estimate is not binding.
(ii) The cost of the move may exceed the estimate.
(iii) The customer will be required to pay up to one hundred ten percent of the estimate upon delivery. Carriers must allow customers at least thirty days from the date of delivery to pay amounts in excess of the one hundred ten percent.
(iv) The customer is not required to pay more than one hundred twenty-five percent of the estimate regardless of the total cost unless the carrier issues and the customer accepts a supplemental estimate.
(7) The carrier must complete the estimates as required by tariff.
(8) All written estimates must be signed and dated by both the carrier and customer prior to the move. If the carrier completes the estimate on the day of the move, the carrier may not charge the customer for travel time to the point of origin or the time spent completing the estimate.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 80.01.040, 81.01.010, 81.04.160, and 81.80.130. WSR 13-23-048 (Docket TV-130079, General Order R-573), § 480-15-630, filed 11/15/13, effective 12/16/13. Statutory Authority: RCW 80.01.040, 80.04.160, 81.04.250, 81.28.040, 81.80.120, 81.80.130 and 81.80.290. WSR 08-02-049 (Docket TV-070466, General Order R-547), § 480-15-630, filed 12/27/07, effective 1/27/08. Statutory Authority: RCW 81.04.160 and 80.01.040. WSR 99-01-077 (Order R-454, Docket No. TV-971477), § 480-15-630, filed 12/15/98, effective 1/15/99.]
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