Alicia D.'s review of Five Star Van Lines

Five Star Van Lines

Customer Reviews & Ratings
Complaint Posted 11/7/2009
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Review 11/7/2009
Do not hire this company. I hired Five Star Van Lines, located in Beverly Hills, to move a bunch of my family’s furniture out to my sister, who just bought a house in Waretown, NJ. They gave me an estimate based on a very accurate inventory for $1333. I insisted from the beginning that my items must be weighed. Carrie, their booking agent, promised that they would, admitting that to do it any other way is ILLEGAL (which it is, I checked). I signed an Order of Service contract at pick-up and paid them $1000 by check because they refused to take credit card, even though the agreement when we reserved the move was to pay by credit card for the entire move. They told me that they would come out with an empty truck and a weigh-bill for the truck immediately prior to loading. I asked for it when they arrived and they told me that they would go get it and we would do all the paperwork. After they had my stuff loaded up (there wasn’t very much), the pre-load weigh bill that they promised to give me suddenly didn’t exist. They tried to talk me into a cubic feet price of $3000 and told me that would be cheaper than if they weighed it. I refused and insisted that they weigh the items. They told me it was just an error because they were in a hurry, but would weigh it in LA. They promised me both the before and after weigh bills. I told them that we would require a weigh on delivery day that we could observe to confirm that they weren’t trying to cheat me, but in any event, they were bound by the 110%. I then called the main office to make sure that this would weigh in LA before shipping to New Jersey, but they didn’t call me back. About a week later, I get a call from the main office with no less than 3 versions of a story about whether they weighed the stuff, where the stuff was at, what the weight was, etc. I asked them to send me the weigh bills and gave them my email address. They told me I would, but I never got them. I told them again that I would require a weigh upon arrival to verify the amount. The amount had now jumped from $1333 to $3000. About a week after that, on Friday November 6, 2009, I get a call from the driver, whose name is Haim, who wanted to deliver our stuff. He stated that he was an independent driver and drives a Mayflower truck. He told me that he wanted to deliver it the items the next day (Saturday). I told him that we needed to reweigh and suggested a nearby weigh station. I identified one 30 miles from the delivery address. At first, he flat out refused. Then, he agreed, but only if we paid him a “very substantial fee.” Then he tells me that the company had already faxed me the weigh bills (they had not, and I had not even given them my fax number) and that he was not required to weigh again. Then, he outright refuses and said that if I want to see my stuff again, I will have to pay him $2500 in cash that same day (Friday) by directly depositing it in his bank account, or he will destroy or sell my items. I then I call the office again and spoke to the owner of the company (after asking to be moved up the line). The owner at first refuses to tell me his name. He also tells me the same thing as Haim, says I should pay it, and that “it is between me and the driver.” He repeatedly threatened me by stating that if I didn’t, I would never see my items again. He thought it was funny and told me that this is how it works. He does this to everyone, has been doing this exact scheme for six years, and bragged that people have called the police and tried to sue, but he always gets away with it. He told me that every time someone sues, he just moves all his assets out of the corporation and starts a new corporation. He bragged that this is how they make all their money, because if they followed the law, their margins would be too slim to compete in California. He then tells me his name is John Cohen (but, after some extensive research, I was able to trace his company and found out that the owner of the company’s name is Nisim Zvily and that their corporation and agent for service of process filings with the state have been suspended). During the meantime, the driver also confirmed to my sister on the phone that he would destroy all of our items if we did not pay him the cash prior to him even showing up to her house. By that time, we found a weigh station that was less than a mile from my sister’s house, but he nonetheless refused to go. Then, he stated he would go, but delayed arrival (he was supposed to arrive between 9 and noon) until after the station had closed. He arrived at 3 and the station closed at 3, and then used that as an excuse for why he couldn’t get the property weighed. He refused to go to any of the other weigh stations. He said that if we delayed delivery, he was going to charge us $1000 per day. We called the Waretown sheriff. The police officers did come to observe the delivery and made a report, but did nothing else. This wasn't surprising, since they had bragged the day before that people call the police on them all the time, but the police won't do anything. They took the cash and dumped all of our property onto the street. They did not even unload it into the house or garage, although there was plenty of space for the truck to pull right up to the house. The weight of the property should have been roughly 2000 pounds and the estimated price of $1333 was for 2667 pounds. We paid a total of $3,540. Afterward, my sister said that there is a different version of the contract than what I sent her and the signature on it didn't look like mine. Since I told them that I was going to report them and seek redress for their behavior, I guess they are trying to cover their tracks!
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Additional Business Information
Hours   Phone   (310) 948-8225 Address   2160 E. Century Park Apt. 707
Los Angeles, CA 90067
Website Email
Contact   Carrie Prescott Other  
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