Relocation & the Board Make All the Right Moves

Even at the most stately Park Avenue address, relocation is a frequent activity as apartments are bought

and sold and sublet tenants or roommates move in and out. More than 100,000 people hire movers every year in New York City. But while this activity is commonplace, boards need to regulate and monitor relocations, because a lack of vigilance can result in expensive problems and unhappy residents.

Potential Liabilities and Damage

First and foremost, the co-op or condo board should require anyone moving in or out of the building to use a licensed and insured mover. As the result of a law enacted in 1992, all household moves are now regulated by the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT). All legitimate companies must be registered with the DOT, and file evidence of insurance. The board should ask the tenant to verify that the vendor is licensed, and require proof of the vendor's certificate of insurance. A current copy should be filed with the superintendent before the relocation is approved. (Residents can obtain the name of a mover's insurance company by calling the DOT at (518) 457-6503.)

Remember that moving is a strenuous physical task, so the odds of someone being hurt on the job are not remote. If a worker with an uninsured company slips and falls in the lobby, chances are they'll look to the co-op board for compensation. Ensuring vendors are qualified and insured is also beneficial to the resident. If the resident's belongings are lost or damaged, it's nearly impossible to get compensation from an unlicensed vendor.

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