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Ive hired a moving company to move my two industrial sewing

I've hired a moving company...
I've hired a moving company to move my two industrial sewing machines from California to Texas. The driver delivered the machines on June and they are broken badly, can't be fixed. At first, they don't want to pay for the damaged but last week they said it would be $48.00 for me because the contract said $.60 per lbs. I've looked the contract, they estimated the machines 200 cf (1400 lbs). I told them that I can't take that offer and ask for the arbitration hearing but they're ignoring me. Can I sue them at the small claim court?
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Answered in 26 minutes by:
9/19/2013
Thelawman2
Thelawman2, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 1,632
Experience: Attorney-at-Law
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Thelawman2 :

It depends on the amount of damage you are claiming. As long as the amount of damage is below $10,000 then you are able to file a claim in small claims court. However, if there is an arbitration clause in your contract, then they could seek arbitration after you file your claim. They would have to answer to the complaint though in court and seek to compel arbitration. Therefore, either way, you will have a hearing in court, or at least an arbitration proceeding.

Customer: So, should I go ahead to file a complaint at the court?
Thelawman2 :

Yes, that will at least force the movers to answer to your complaint. If they do not, then they will default and you will win.

Customer: Should I bring my husband and my son to be my witnesses? The driver brought the machines at 10:30 pm. He asked me to pay 35% of the cost of moving in cash or money order first. He asked m to signed the paper and he brought machines in. He reported the damaged by phone only, not in writing
Thelawman2 :

Yes, you should bring whatever evidence you can to show that the movers caused the damage and the amount of damage

Customer: I don't buy the liability insurance because they have one covers with $.60 per lbs. But my machines cost $2000.00
Thelawman2 :

Just because you didn't buy liability insurance that was offered does not mean that you cannot sue for the damages

Customer: Can I ask them give me back the payment $885 for the moving cost ?
Thelawman2 :

If you ask for that, and they give it to you, that could be seen as a settlement for the damages they caused.

Customer: I've called them so many times to ask them proceed my claim because I use these machine for a living. It has been three months already that I'm out f job, can I do a counterclaim for my lost income also?
Customer: Sorry, out 'of' job
Thelawman2 :

Probably not. The loss of your job is too unrelated to the contract you had with them.

Customer: Should I hire a paralegal to help my paper works? Do you know how much would it cost?
Thelawman2 :

Hiring someone experienced in the procedure of filing a claim would be helpful; however, it could easily result in costs that exceed the amount you are trying to recover.

Thelawman2 :

If you contact the clerk of the courts, they might be able to help you with the process. Small claims court is supposed to be simple enough to permit people to go it on their own

Customer: Do I still have enough time to file a complaint because it has been three months already?
Thelawman2 :

Yes, you have four years to bring a complaint

Customer: I can go to the court in Texas, not in California, right ? The driver did not say what happened, how did it happen or where?
Thelawman2 :

Yes you can sue in Texas

Customer: Thank you so much for your help today. I am very happy with your service. Have a good evening!
Thelawman2
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