Hey pros, is it just me?

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Hey pros, is it just me?

Postby chptrkrules » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:35 pm

You know how everybody that gets a DWI tells the cops they have only had 2 beers, is it the same thing about jewelery theft claims in our industry? I mean in the last 7 years I've had 4 customers that claim jewelery was stolen and it's a $10,000 piece? Every time $10,000, who leaves a $10,000 piece of jewelery laying around for strangers to pack. I mean we take it seriously and get the police involved anytime someone claims theft and every time the crews have been cleared, like everybody we do background and drug test on all the crews, I mean I'm sure it happens but why $10,000?

Last summer I had a customer who's apartment got flooded, so the property company paid for everything, we packed and loaded her crappy ghetto stinky apartment and the next day she calls me actually crying, sobbing because the crew stole a $10,000 piece of jewelery. And I knew she was lying.

Today I had a call from a customer all pissed off (fake pissed off) because our crew stole a $10,000 piece of jewelery, a week after delivery.

Oh well, it's slow time and I thought y'all would have some good stories

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Location: Cos Cob, CT / Oxford, CT

Re: Hey pros, is it just me?

Postby BillAdams » Fri Feb 03, 2012 8:43 am

My opinion: Most people do not own a $10k piece, and those who do are sure to keep them safe when the movers come. Common sense should tell everyone not to ship expensive jewelry or cash. These claims are false.

My story: This past summer, a customer of mine moving within Greenwich, CT (wealthy community) was more than delighted when our crew presented her with a small plastic box they found in her basement during the packing. It had been hidden by her recently fired housekeeper, and had several pieces of jewelry that they had collected with the intention of stealing. The tennis bracelet alone was worth $10k.
They received a very nice tip.
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones that you did do, so throw off the bowlines, sail away from safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream, Discover."
-Mark Twain

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Re: Hey pros, is it just me?

Postby BigLeeCalif » Fri Feb 03, 2012 3:54 pm

No it is not just you. And it isn't just COD shippers who pull that scam. We see it quite often with military shipments.

Usually the old plasma/lcd tv was working just fine when it was loaded, but now it doesn't work at all.... even after being shipped upright with tipntell attached.

The other day someone alleged theft of some very expensive medication from her purse.

I haven't seen the 10k stolen item yet, but have seen expensive baseball card collections, coin collections, and heirloom jewelry.

In every case, there was no proof it was ever tendered, because it was not inventoried, and all pbo cartons checked off.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

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Re: Hey pros, is it just me?

Postby GP6971 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:24 pm

I've seen a couple of these type claims over the years, but the one that got me was a table got damaged and severely scratched and our employee wanted to fix it himself and he wouldn't even charge us for his labor......just $3,750 for materials. When pressed for what the materials consisted of, it was "you know, sand paper, stain etc".

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Re: Hey pros, is it just me?

Postby NYCMover » Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:23 pm

We did a job last year where the wife (it was a couple with 2 kids) had a lot of medical issues and was taking meds galore. They were set up for a partial pack. The day before we were supposed to come to pack the breakables - she calls me and tells me she can't deal with all this and can we finish the packing of her portion. I go over there (within an hour) and write a revised estimate. She tells me we're to pack everything except the clothes from her closet, but we will leave her the wardrobes.

We go in the next day and pack the whole place, except her hanging clothes as per instructions.

On load day, we have the (8,500 lbs.) load 90% in the truck, when she calls the office cursing like a longshoreman saying my men are thieves, that she is missing a bag of jewelry worth thousands that was on the floor of her closet in the MBR. She tells me the police are already on the way and she's going to have us all arrested, because we're *!#$'ing crooks.

She's so insistent that we took her jewelry that the cops make us unload 7,000+ lbs. onto the sidewalk and have the men cut open all the boxes, so everyone can root around looking for the (supposedly) stolen jewelry. Guess what, the missing bag of jewelry is in the bottom of one of the wardrobes SHE PACKED!! Then when the stuff turns up, she says "Good!" turns her back on us and cops, then turns and walks into the house without an apology or a call to the office to apologize for slamming us and our people. She also refused to pay extra labor hours for us to re-seal the boxes and re-pack the truck.

Oh, incidentally - when it came time to rate us for the van line, she gave us 1 of 5 stars with a "would not recommend" for our trouble.

To the other guys/gals working in the industry - thank goodness that this lady was 1 out of 1,000 and most customers are fairly understanding and easy to work with. I can imagine what the claim and aftermath of this story would have been had she not found the jewelry bag or lied about it.

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Re: Hey pros, is it just me?

Postby promover2 » Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:56 pm

We've had a handful of these over the years. We always get the police involved and/or request the crew AND the shipper to submit to a lie detector test. If the police report stating that there's not enough evidence to proceed isn't enough, the lie detector request usually quashes these frivolous claims.

Prior to any of this, we have our estimators discuss the procedure (no cash, jewelry, deeds/wills, titles, etc. in the home on pack/move day) then have them sign acknowledging that they are aware of this requirement. We then let them know that if they do ship something of high value, it must be on a high value inventory so we can take proper steps to seal and mark boxes and to know the whereabouts of these items while in our custody.

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