Never EVER use EAST COAST MOVING SYSTEMS

Picture it. You’re moving to New York on Friday. The moving company is coming Tuesday. You spend all weekend packing, sorting, organizing. Then Monday (today) you get a phonecall.

“Hi, Adam? This is East Coast Moving Systems. I’m afraid we’re having technical problems and we’re not going to be able to move you from Atlanta to New York after all. We’re sorry.”

This is exactly what happened to me today and I’m still reeling from it. Never before have I been so pissed off at a company. And apparently, I’m not the first. I just did a Google search on them and all these hits come up with titles like “moving scam and crooks. I wish I’d done that search sooner.

Having just studied for the bar, I know that we had a contract (we gave a $$ deposit) and that they breached it and that my damages are whatever it costs to find a replacement. However, finding a replacement on such short notice is a killer proposition. Summer is peak moving season, and August is the peak of that peak. Luckily–by some miracle–I was able to find what seems like a reliable company, Atlanta Shipping, and the guy seems like a swell guy. They’re coming Wednesday for my stuff and it will be up there next week.

Meanwhile, I spoke to my friend Andrew tonight who also used East Coast Moving Systems and he got screwed in his own unique way. They picked up his stuff last week and told him it would get there the next week. Then they called him a few days ago and said the stuff would arrive Sunday. Andrew wasn’t scheduled to get to New York until Monday. So he changed his ticket and flew up on Sunday morning and when Sunday afternoon came around, they never showed. He called the driver and he was in South Carolina, not anywhere near New York. Suffice it to say, Andrew was really pissed off. Plus, now they called today to tell him they lost his cashier’s check and he needs to cancel it and write another one when they deliver. This company is ultra-sketchy.

I know this is a food blog, and moving companies are very much off topic. But perhaps this warning will justify the post: never EVER under any circumstances use East Coast Moving Systems or you’ll find yourself in a rotten moldy pickle.

18 comments

  1. Holy crap! What a bunch of jerks. Is it just me, or is the moving industry one of the most corrupt, shady enterprises going today?

  2. Hey I stumbled across your dilemma from AskMe. Anyway, does your local news station have some sort of consumer advocacy segment? I know a couple of my local stations do. This one guy is like a bulldog. Anyway, I recommend appealing to them. If your story is as blatantly fraudulant as it sounds like it is, they may be able to use their own muscle to get to the bottom of it.

  3. I agree w/ Mims suggestion – it’s worth looking into. I had a somewhat similar moving experience when I relocated from VA to Germany – a few sterling serving bowls “dissapered”, along with a few other small, valuable items. And our TV armoire was crushed. Ah, the joys of moving.

  4. My moving company wasn’t a giant scam, but theywere hella incompetant. They managed to arrive in Chester PA instead of Philadelphia PA (even though I gave them a full address wih zip code), took 3 days longer than expected, didn’t bring enough help so that *I* had to help drag my stuff up to a 3rd floor apartment WITH them, lost 3 of my boxes (never recovered), and ended up giving me a paltry insurance settlement (which I took, just so I could wash my hands of the business). UGH! Moving sucks.

    ~Veronica

    P.S.- Adam, tonight I made swee and sour chicken from scratch. According to my meat eating friend, it was a wild success ;)

  5. Well Adam, Guess what — It is now thursday, and still no furniture. I received a phone call from EastCoastStealYourFurniture.com on Wednesday evening, and they promised it was coming tuesday AM. No phone call on wed, no furniture delivered, no return phone call after I called them at 2:00pm. So the saga continues!!!

  6. Adam, you are lucky. East Coast picked up my furniture – everything I own, 4 bedroom houseful, plus tax returns, computers, photos, adoption documents, etc. etc. on July 2 and never seen again. I just moved from Massachusetts to Atlanta. They were supposed to deliver on July 5th, and ever since then it’s been – delays, the truck is broken, they don’t answer their phone, etc. It is just a scam. They put your furniture in a warehouse, and pick up someone else’s furniture, and deliver yours when and if it is convenient. I am glad they did not take your furniture. You would not have anything now. Like me and my daughter, you’d be sleeping on the floor and cooking frozen dinners in the oven in cardboard boxes. I will try the suggestion of the gentleman about the consumer advocate on TV. Maybe we should all get together and file a lawsuit.

    Best wishes in your new city!

  7. I started a blog for victims of this company. There are quite a few. I just want to link it to this page, since it is coming up high in the Google list.

    Good luck Andrew!

    Kathy

  8. Sorry Adam. I moved in January 04 and am still waiting for my claims check for lost furniture. RONI is VERY RUDE and they treat you like you are the idiot. I complained to BBB but they sided on East Coast Moving. NOW I’m getting a lawyer involved and don’t be surprised if they make the news. Record all of your communication because they never say the same thing twice. If anyone out there has my cherrywood mirror and small antique table PLEASE let me know. I lost lots of sentimental items that were passed down from generation to generation.

  9. Sorry Adam. I moved in January 04 and am still waiting for my claims check for lost furniture. RONI is VERY RUDE and they treat you like you are the idiot. I complained to BBB but they sided on East Coast Moving. NOW I’m getting a lawyer involved and don’t be surprised if they make the news. Record all of your communication because they never say the same thing twice. If anyone out there has my cherrywood mirror and small antique table PLEASE let me know. I lost lots of sentimental items that were passed down from generation to generation.

  10. I am also a “customer” of East Coast Moving Systems. They were to move some of my late relative’s furniture to my house, and they twice have failed to show up due to “mechanical problems”. I wish I had performed an internet search prior to initiating an agreement with them, but that’s irrelevant at this point. The point now is that they have my two initial deposits, and I have nothing in return. Fortunately the second time I was told that “the truck broke down”, I did look on the internet, and discovered the devastating truth. I told the manager of my late relative’s apartment that they were not to allow East Coast Moving to take the furniture. I have now contacted a mover that someone I know vouches for, but I am still out my initial deposit money.

    This company should not be allowed to continue to operate. I agree that they should be brought to the attention of the media and the state’s attorney general office. My concern is that a concerted effort is required to raise East Coast above the many other fraudlent businesses that are unfortunately also under scrutiny. So I recommend that we all send complaints to the Florida Attorney General’s Office. This is a Florida business, so the FL Atty. Gen. is in the best position to do something about East Coast. The URL for the FL Atty. Gen. is http://myfloridalegal.com/

    Please fill out the on-line form. It’s better than nothing.

    Incidentally I have been trying to phone East Coast for the past several days and all I receive is an answering machine. When I called this morning their message service said the phone mail box was full. The hurricane may have has disrupted their phone service, but there might be other explanations…

  11. We are experiencing the same problem with Eastcoast Moving Systems. My mother in-law hired them to move down from New York to Tampa for a July 30th delivery. They have never called us to update us on the situation and the few times we have cornered them to give us some explanation, we get the same run around, false delivery dates and of course, they cannot get a hold of the truckers nor dispatch. My mother in-law is staying with us but has been paying for an empty apartment and missing her special bed that she needs for her medical condition. Needless to say we are all very angry and would like to know how can we make these thiefs pay.

  12. This is something we can do:

    A complaint can be filed against the mover by –

    Calling FMCSA’s 24-hour toll-free hotline (1 888 368 7238), or

    Accessing the FMCSA’s Web site at http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov

    The complaint may trigger a Federal enforcement investigation against the mover.

    FMCSA does not have authority to resolve loss and damage claims against a moving company.

    Appropriate settlement remedies, include:

    Use of mover’s dispute settlement program

    Litigating in the appropriate civil court

  13. We too experienced what so many others have with East Coast Moving Systems. Chris, you are so right…it is irrelevant now that we didn’t check out all the websites on ECMS before letting them move us. We have mentally beaten ourselves up so bad over this. Our daughter just graduating from college, we urged her to use a mover and all her worldly possesions from TX to Arizona. We are lucky that we received items 3 weeks later BUT. had lots of merchandise missing from the load. Yes, the truck broke down, delivery time promised, broken, the list goes on and on and is the same as everyone else. How many companies do you know deliver in rental trucks at 3:30 a.m. in the morning. I have checked websites and also found that they are in Federal Violaton of not providing a “pamphlet” on moving. The trucks they use do not have their interstate license number printed on the side. The list goes on. We have also tried calling since Friday and experiencing the same with the phone system. We last talked with Roni Green at ECMS and she was very, very rude and unprofessional. We asked where our belongings had been in storage and told that was none of our business. I believe the “lost” merchandise is our business and it would be my opinion that it is not lost but stolen. We have emailed Roni Green, Rick Adams, David Rokach, Sadi Rokach, the last two names names we have found associated with this company and no response. If anyone wishes to contact us, has any updated informaton we would appreciate hearing from you. Perhaps a class action law suit is in order. It is time to STOP the wrong this company has done to so many people. Beth 08-18-04

  14. The story now turns tragic. I got a call last night (8/18) from a man who refused to identify himself other than to say he was a driver for ECMS. He said he had gone to their offices in Florida on Monday to pick up his paycheck and the office is locked up tight and everyone is gone. They apparently are out of business. He broke into the office and got my name and phone number and was calling me to see what the status of my move was and if I had heard from them recently. My stuff was picked up on July 12 and my story is identical to everyone elses. I finally got out of him that the reason for his anonymity was that he is an illegal alien and doesn’t have ANY proper credentials.

    My plan is to contact the Attorney General of Florida and Washington State since this crime covers both juristictions for me. There should be some sort of household movers national trade association that can be accessed to give advise as to recourse in this type of situation. Since they have closed the doors, it’s too late to seek enforcement from the Dept of Transportation.

    If your stuff is missing you might want to call around to the self storage facilities in your area and see if there are any units rented by ECMS. If so you’ll probably find your stuff there.

    If anyone comes up with additional ideas or resources, please share them on line.

  15. Hey everyone, I’m so sorry to hear about your losses. ECMS sucks and I’ll be glad to know how things turn out for everyone. Because this is a food site, I’m going to close the comments for this post and direct you all to the ECMS Victims Blog where you can all vent your frustrations. Do keep me up to date on any goings on and I sincerely hope everyone gets their stuff back!

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