In March of 2014 I moved to the St. Thomas Virgin Islands. I contracted a company named Omega shipping to ship all of my household goods. At the same time I set up an insurance policy with Seaport Marine Insurance Company. When I set up the insurance policy I did a few things to protect myself. 1. I took detailed pictures of my highest priced items to show that they were in immaculate condition and sent the detailed inventory list along with the pictures to the shipping company to submit to the insurance company prior to the professional movers coming to pack all of my items as was outlined in the insurance policy. 2. I wrote out a detailed inventory of how much I paid for my items and sent that as an excel spreadsheet prior to the professional movers coming to box all of my items as was laid out in the agreement. I also took out a $200k policy to cover all of my goods at the cost of $6k. Prior to anything being boxed and or prepared for shipment. On March 17, 2014 the movers came and moved all of my household goods. They documented everything that they packed and didn’t make any mention of any defects of my goods. Then they shipped them to St. Thomas. A month after we had been in St. Thomas the goods arrived and the moving company on St. Thomas stored the items until we found a permanent residence which was about an additional 30 days. It is important to keep in mind we worked with our shipping company to maintain our insurance coverage on all of our household goods until it reached our final location and was delivered and set up. We moved into our new home on March 28th. When the movers brought in our furniture a lot of our furniture was damaged, massacred and mangled. While the movers were unpacking our furniture I was taking pictures and contacting my moving representative and telling her how much of my stuff had been damaged. She said don’t worry that’s what the insurance was for and it would all be taken care of. After all of the damage had been assessed I worked with my rep to figure out what to do next. I was told that I had to hire a surveyor on St. Thomas, pay them to survey my items, take pictures, and write up the reports etc. before anything could be done. I was already pissed that so much of my furniture was damaged and the fact I was expected to pay someone to survey my items on top of this was ridiculous. I worked with my shipping company who ended up paying for the surveyor’s services on my behalf. All of the information was submitted sometime in July. I was in constant contact with the insurance company regarding the status of my claim and they kept telling me the same thing it’s with the underwriters. Finally in October after calling, emailing, and leaving messages for about 2-3 weeks with absolutely no response I reached back out to my shipping company and asked for their help. They informed me that they had been having the same amount of trouble contacting the insurance company as I had been having and only after threatening them with a case to the BBB did they finally respond. The following day I receive a RIDICULOUS offer from the company which doesn’t even begin to touch the amount of damage that my household good sustained. In essence it was a slap in the face. The company tried to send me a long explanation about why it didn’t cover this and that. When I asked the company why did they even require me to solicit a surveyor if they weren’t going to honor their recommendations and that I was going to file formal complaint with numerous websites and individuals about their shady business practices I was told that their lawyer would be contacting me. I told the woman fine, you can’t threaten me for telling the truth about this situation. I have all of the records from this transaction dating back to before my items were shipped. The surveyor read all of the rules and obligations listed in the insurance companies “policies” and his recommendations were based on restoring my household goods to their former state not based on replacement value which is what I really wanted. The insurance company wouldn’t even honor that. They went so far as to offer me percentages of the restoration value which I found to be completely outlandish. In essence they were discounting the price even more because they didn’t want to pay me. I have been fighting tooth and nail just to get what’s owed to me especially on my big ticket items. According to their policy they don’t cover electronics yet the shipping company lost my daughter’s karaoke machine. It never states anywhere in their paperwork that if something is lost that it isn’t covered… They considered it an electronic so it didn’t meet the criteria. They are doing all types of shady business practices that need to be reviewed. I was forced to hire a professional surveyor to assess the damage of my household items and they still won’t honor the recommendations. I have everything in writing and I will be uploading them for your review. After being nice for months today I had the last straw and found that the company thought that they could continue to walk on me which prompted me to reach out to the BBB for some help. I was supposed to be awarded $7,031 according to the surveyor yet these people want to offer me less than $2,000. There is no justice in that and I would like them to be held accountable.
This review (Seaport Marine Insurance Services, LLC Review) was originally published at Holy Smoke !.
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