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New Law Protects Against Moving Scams

A new consumer protection law puts more restrictions on movers in Florida including increased penalties for those who refuse to return a customer’s property. 

TALLAHASSEE – As Florida’s population grows, a new state law requiring movers to register with the state, provide clear contracts and avoid misleading advertising went into effect on July 1. The law increased penalties for movers who refuse a lawful order to return private possessions to a client, among other things.

The new provisions of Chapter 507 of the Florida Statutes introduce a series of consumer protection measures for household moving services occurring within Florida, including:

  • Mandatory registration: All movers and moving brokers must register with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, ensuring proper vetting and authorization to operate.
  • Enhanced transparency: Movers are required to provide detailed and clear estimates and contracts to customers, outlining all potential costs, dates and terms; moving brokers are now banned from providing contracts for services that include estimated moving costs for improved consumer clarity.
  • Advertising integrity: Strict guidelines are set for advertising moving services, preventing false claims and ensuring the company's registration status is disclosed.
  • Clarified punishments: It is now a third-degree felony, and may result in fines of up to $50,000, if a mover or mover's employee, agent or contractor refuses to comply with an order from a law enforcement officer to relinquish a shipper's household goods in certain situations.

Already, the state has taken action against more than 18 movers and moving brokers that allegedly scammed consumers Attorney General Ashley Moody said. Her office also updated its Scams at a Glance: On the Move online resource, which provides information and tips for consumers seeking moving services.

“Moving is stressful, and deceitful movers can compound the stress involved with relocating. There is a new law in place to better protect consumers trying to relocate,” she said

Tips from Scams at a Glance: On the Move include:

  • Know that movers and brokers that conduct interstate moves must be licensed with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration check a company's licensing by visiting
  • Check if movers and brokers handling intrastate moves are licensed with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services by visiting
  • Read all contract documents thoroughly before signing.
  • Consider personally moving important items, such as daily medication or supplies, that will be needed immediately upon arrival.

2024 States News Service