How to Check Movers License Number

Moving scams are an unfortunate part of the moving industry today. As their numbers grow and their strategies evolve, vetting moving companies North Miami as you search for the best movers becomes ever more important. It’s only through a thorough check that you can ensure a moving company is legitimate and trustworthy. And the best way to do that is with the help of a movers license number. But what is that and how do you use it? If you’ve never moved before or never thought to verify your movers’ license information, you may not know exactly a movers license number can help you. That’s why we’ve created this helpful guide with all the information you need!

What is a movers license number?

A movers license number is also known as a USDOT number. This is a unique identifying number issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration or FMCSA to all companies that legally operate commercial vehicles in order to transport goods and people across state lines. It consists of seven digits and is unique to each company. Most commonly, you can find it on a moving company’s website. Pro Movers Miami, for example, displays its USDOT number 2855891 on the site in a way that ensures it’s visible from all pages.

Numbers on a pavement.
A USDOT number consists of 7 digits.

These numbers serve a dual purpose. On the one hand, the US government uses them to compile all relevant information about the company. This includes compliance reviews, crash investigations, audits and inspections among other things. On the other hand, potential customers also use this number to research moving companies they want to hire. Since all the information is gathered in one place, potential clients can thus easily see a moving company’s licenses, reviews and complaints.

Who needs to have it?

As a federal agency, the FMCSA primarily deals with interstate movers and carriers. Therefore, all companies that offer interstate moving services must register with the FMCSA and receive a movers license number. However, it’s not just interstate movers that need a USDOT number. Some states also require local movers to register with the FMCSA. So even if you’re thinking of hiring local movers, it’s worth checking if they have a USDOT number you can check.

How can you use a movers license number to research movers?

When you’re moving, hiring movers will be a big step. Before you decide which movers to hire, you should do your research. You shouldn’t go with the first company you find and hire just any movers. Otherwise, you may end up the victim of a moving scam.

Looking glass.
Always do your research before hiring movers.

A cursory Google search can tell you which moving companies are in your area and operate the kind of services you need. But it won’t help you figure out who the best of those movers are. So you will have to do some more thorough research. You can do this by obtaining the movers USDOT number and using it to search for the company on the FMCSA website to obtain more information. This will help you narrow down your search. Then you should get several moving quotes Miami from several different moving companies that you find are reputable. That way you’ll know you’re getting the best prices

What can a movers license number help you discover?

So what can you find out through a movers license number? Well, the first thing you’ll learn is the obvious – that the movers are licensed. This is arguably the most important piece of information you need to have about a moving company. If a company is required to have a USDOT number but doesn’t, this is a major red flag!

Aside from that and the basic information about the company (such as their address and phone number), you will also find some pertinent safety information using the USDOT number. For example, you will be able to see the company’s latest safety rating, their vehicle inspection results and crash reports. You will also have insight into a breakdown of their performance on the road. This includes:

  • results of investigations into unsafe driving
  • crash indicator
  • hours of service compliance
  • any vehicle maintenance that has been missed or done
  • investigations into  the handling of controlled substances
  • hazardous materials compliance
  • tests of driver fitness

All of this should help you get a clearer picture of the company’s safety and reliability. When it comes to performance, you may be able to judge what you can expect on the basis of information like the company’s fleet size and number of drivers or the history of complaints which the USDOT number also reveals.

Wheel of a vehicle.
You can find out how many vehicles a company has.

Why is it important to use the movers license number for your research?

You may think that there’s no need for a search using the movers license number. After all, you can look up reviews on the company’s website or social media. Those give a pretty accurate idea of how good the movers are, right? But those reviews are not always reliable. Some companies post fake reviews to boost their own scores or screen comments to filter out negative feedback. The information you will find using the USDOT number, on the other hand, is unbiased, reliable and thorough. It also includes some information you can’t find elsewhere. Licensing and insurance information, for example, is not something you’ll read elsewhere!

Are there other ways to vet a moving company?

There are, of course, ways you can research a moving company other than through the movers license number. We do not, however, advise relying on that information without checking the FMCSA records. Instead, it’s best to combine the search through the USDOT number with other ways to vet a company. One of the things you can do is ask people you know if they have experience with your chosen movers. Another useful thing is to check the reviews. This is a great way to find out what other people in your situation thought of the company and their services. Just remember to check several different sources (including BBB, Yelp and social media) and focus on the most recent ones for the most accurate assessment. This combination of sources should give you a pretty good idea of the kind of movers you’re dealing with!