All You Need To Know About A Certificate of Insurance in NYC

Moving out of one apartment into another one is unfortunately one of the many tasks that are high up on people’s stressor lists. To be in charge of so many moving parts, desperately trying to make the pieces fit together seamlessly is exhausting. There are a lot more things to take into consideration than you would think. It is essential to cover all of your bases in order to prevent potential mishaps when you are moving. Let’s say for instance you want to hire movers in order to transfer all of your furniture from one place to the other. This is quite common and can make your life exponentially easier as all you have to do is pack up your items and then pay a moving company. 

If you do choose to take the moving company route, great! However, there is a requirement in New York State to guarantee that the moving company in which you decide to hire is insured to deal with any potential damages that may take place during the move. This is called a Certificate of Insurance (COI). Unfamiliar with this term? Don’t worry, I was too at first. There is a lot to cover, but with enough research I have figured out the in’s and out’s for you. 

What is a Certificate of Insurance?

Let’s start off with the basics of what a COI is. Like stated previously, this is a document that is requested from most property managers in order to verify that the moving company you are hiring will be legally liable under insurance to deal with any sort of damage that may occur during your move in. This relieves the burden of responsibility from property managers as they will simultaneously not be held accountable for any of the damage even if it does happen within the bounds of their property. When hiring a moving company, simply ask for their COI due to building rules and most will happily comply. If the moving company denies proof of certificate of insurance, then the management company will not allow them to proceed with the move. 

What does a COI cover?

Now, we can take a look at what exactly a COI covers. This is not to say that all COIs cover what is mentioned, but most do. So, it is important to double check before you proceed. COIs cover: umbrella coverage, cargo insurance, workers compensation, automotive liability, and liability insurance. The amount of coverage per move is usually about $1-2 million USD, but some buildings require the coverage to add up to a certain amount. 

There are specific pieces of data that a COI may include that a management company will look for. You should take the steps in reading over the COI provided and making sure it checks all necessary boxes. The COI needs to be addressed to the person authorized by the building you are providing the COI. It also should state the movers that are insured, the address of the building you are planning on moving into, and how much the certificate covers. 

How Do I Request a COI?

How exactly do you go about getting a COI? Well, it is a lot easier than it may seem. Simply, all you need to do is reach out to the property manager and ask for a template. You should ask for one from the building you are moving out of and one from the building you are moving into. If either of them are unable to provide a template, you should get information from the certificate holders and the person the certificate needs to be addressed to. 

Troubleshooting Issues with a COI

There are a few things you should look out for in a suspicious COI. Fees are nonexistent when it comes to producing and providing these documents. If any party asks to pay a fee, it is most likely a scam. NY insurance companies do not require a fee for COI production, so there should be no need to pay anything. You should also be sure to have copies of all documents sent to you as well as documented correspondence. This prevents any miscommunication of parties saying they did not receive the necessary papers. As previously mentioned, you should double check the amount covered by the COI in conjunction with the building’s requirements. If you have a COI set up for your move, but do not meet the proper amount of coverage necessary then you could run into a sticky situation on your most important day. Do your own research in finding a reliable moving company. Read reviews, call ahead and ask all obligatory questions, and if you are unsure at any point it is okay to back out! 

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