There is common confusion about the difference between Binding and Non-Binding estimates. Let’s review together the difference between the 2 estimates and also when and how to use a Revised Estimate.

Binding estimate

  • Binding both on the shipper and the carrier
  • Applies to weight and cubic feet based shipment
  • Weight-based shipments do not require weighing of the truck
  • Must include all accessorial services at origin and destination
  • Can only be Revised if additional items or services are requested (more below)

Non-Binding estimate

  • Applies only to weight-based shipments
  • Requires the weighing of the truck before and after the shipment is loaded
  • Final charges are determined after weighing of the truck and may only increase based on the actual weight and up to 10% over the estimate (110% rule)
  • Can only be Revised if additional items or services are requested (more below)

Revised Estimate

  • Can only be issued prior to the commencement of the move (prior to loading)
  • Applies to both Binding and non-binding estimates
  • Can only be issued when additional items or services are requested
  • Must list the additional items and services requested and the type of estimate (Binding or Non-binding)
  • When revising an estimate, the type of estimate selected must be the same as the original estimate (i.e Binding estimate=>Revised Binding Estimate), unless agreed upon in writing by the shipper
  • Must be signed by both the driver and the shipper

Exceptions to be aware of

Additional charges may apply in the following situations:

  1. Additional Pickup or Delivery – May require that a new contract be drafted and service may be declined unless a full payment is agreed upon by the shipper
  2. Impracticable Operations (Shuttle, long carry, etc.) – up to 15% of binding or non-binding estimates

To summarise, Both estimates are an approximation of the move costs, and any revision must be agreed in writing by both parties. Properly executed estimates and/or revised estimate will keep you in compliance and help you avoid refunds, chargebacks and Overcharge claims.

To learn more about household goods compliance, training and to learn about required legal documents, send us a note or call us.