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Understanding Moving Claims

Sometimes moves don’t go as smoothly as you would hope. You are entitled to receive compensation for lost or damaged property, and expenses incurred due to a lapse in service. You are highly encouraged to file claims in these instances and can find more details about the various types of claims and how to file for each in the information below.

If you have any questions about this process, you can contact your transportation service provider, your local transportation office, your service branch military claims office or PCSmyPOV.

Personal Property claims

If any of your household goods are lost, damaged or destroyed during the moving process, you may be entitled to full replacement/repair value of those items. This includes items that have been transported via the following move types:

  • Household goods, or HHG
  • Unaccompanied baggage, or UB
  • Non-temporary storage, or NTS
  • Direct procurement method, or DPM

Follow the steps below when filing a claim.

Note: What does “full replacement value” mean?
When you are moving with the military, your items are insured at “full replacement/repair value”, or FRV, at no additional cost to you. Essentially, this means that if an item is lost or destroyed during the move, the TSP is obligated to pay the lesser of the replacement/repair cost. If replacement cost is offered, it should replace the item with the same or similar item. The replacement item could be new or used. The TSP will still require proof of the item’s value, quality and evidence of the cost to replace it. If the item can be repaired, as determined by a qualified inspector, and the repair cost is less than the replacement, the TSP may pay for the repair.

Step 1: Give a notice of loss/damage within 180 calendar days from delivery date

The first step in initiating a claim is to give your TSP a written notice that some of your items were missing or damaged during the move process and that you intend to file a claim. You can submit this notice in two ways:

  1. Review and sign the Notification for Loss and Damage At Delivery form given to you by your delivering TSP on delivery day.
  2. Submit the Notification of Loss and Damage After Delivery form in the Defense Personal Property System, or DPS, which is the portal where you originally scheduled your move. Click on “Start My Loss & Damage Report” to find that form.

Note Rule Change: The 180 calendar days timeframe only applies to shipments picked up on or after May 15, 2020. Shipments picked up prior to May 15, 2020 still adhere to the previous 75 calendar days timeframe.

Exclusion: If your shipment included NTS or DPM and/or was processed outside of DPS, then you must submit the Notification of Loss/Damage At/After Delivery form within 75 calendar days, not 180 calendar days. The checklist you receive during your counseling session will specify the methods used to process your move so you know if this exclusion applies to you.

Step 2: File a claim within 9 months from delivery date

After you give your notice of loss or damage, you must file an itemized claim in DPS for every item that was lost or damaged during the moving process. For NTS and DPM shipments, your claim may be emailed, faxed or mailed.

You will have up to nine months to file a claim for the full replacement/repair value of the item(s) you are claiming. If the claim is filed more than nine months from the delivery date, you will only be eligible for the depreciated value.

Before logging into DPS, save yourself some time by gathering as much of the information below as possible. The more details you can provide about your items, the better. If you have before and after photos or receipts of the item, that will significantly help throughout the process. Learn more about how to inventory your belongings.

Here is an example of the data you may need for replacement or repair of a damaged appliance:

  • Manufacturer: Samsung
  • Brief description of item: Front-load washing machine, model number ABC12345
  • Inventory item number: 78
  • Cost at purchase: $1,000
  • Year of purchase: 2016
  • Description of damage: Plexiglas on washing machine door has been broken.
  • Repair estimate (optional): $250 from Samsung Repair Wizard
  • Photos and receipts (if available):

Step 3: Work with the TSP to assess your claim

After you have submitted the claim, the TSP must confirm receipt of your claim within 15 calendar days.

The TSP is then responsible for assessing the value of your property and may send someone to inspect the damaged property, repair items, or pick up any items that are damaged beyond economical repair. They are required to share those assessment reports with you upon written request. If an item(s) is lost, the TSP will start an official tracer to locate your goods.

If your household goods shipment was picked up May 15, 2020 and after, the TSP must pay, deny or make an offer within 30 calendar days on all claims valued at $1,000 or less and 60 calendar days on claims over $1,000. You will have the opportunity to accept or make a counter-offer for each item and the TSP must respond to your reply within seven calendar days. Remember, this is a negotiation, so you may counter-offer if you feel the offer amount is not appropriate and the item is not marked as “Final.”

For shipments involving multiple providers (NTS and DPM), the delivering TSP must notify you and the appropriate military claims office within three business days if they are denying liability for the loss or damage. In these cases, it is recommended that you transfer your claim to the MCO who will work on your behalf to determine which parties are responsible for the claimed item(s).

Note: If the TSP has stopped communication, do not dispose of, obtain a repair estimate, or repair any items in your claim without first contacting the MCO for approval.

Step 4: Finalize the settlement or transfer to the MCO

You may settle a claim by accepting or rejecting in full or line item. If you are using DPS, you must finalize the offer in the system. TSP providers (to include NTS and DPM) are then required to make payment or repairs within 30 calendar days of an agreed upon settlement amount. If an item is being repaired, the TSP must hire a repair company no later than 20 calendar days from claim submission and the repair must be completed within 45 calendar days.

For any items that have been designated as “salvage items,” the TSP must take possession of those items at your residence or other location you deem acceptable. The pickup must occur no later than 30 calendar days from the TSP’s notification from the repair firm that an item is beyond repair, or within 20 calendar days of inspection (to include virtual), whichever occurs first. The pickup period can be extended by an agreement between you and the TSP in writing.

Note: DO NOT FEEL PRESSURED – only accept an offer if you are completely satisfied with the offered amount.

Not fully satisfied? Contact your MCO

If you are unable to come to an agreement with the TSP, or they have not communicated with you for more than 30 calendar days, your next step is to transfer the claim to your military claims office. The MCO will take over from there, but it’s important you stay in close contact with them throughout the process. Prior to transferring the claim to the MCO, contact your local transportation office for assistance with your TSP.

You have two years from delivery date to transfer your claim to your MCO. You will receive a depreciated value for the item(s) upfront and then your MCO will continue to negotiate for the full replacement value on your behalf. If they are successful in recouping funds from the TSP, you will receive the difference up to the full replacement/repair value, or FRV. Exemption: For all NTS and DPM claimed item(s), you will be paid the FRV upfront.

Important dates for claim filing

It is important that you stay proactive throughout the claims process and it’s recommended you follow up well before the timelines displayed below.

Delivery day

For any lost, damaged, or destroyed items discovered on delivery day, request that your delivering TSP (moving truck driver) complete and sign a Notification for Loss and Damage At Delivery form. Please verify that the TSP contact information is clearly listed on the form.

Up to 180 calendar days after delivery date

If you didn’t submit a form on delivery day, you can still submit notification using the Defense Personal Property System or DPS. You have up to 180 calendar days for household goods shipments picked up on or after May 15, 2020 to inspect your property, annotate all loss and damage not previously discovered and reported at the time of delivery, and provide notice to the TSP.

Note: for household goods shipments picked up prior to May 15, 2020 you have 75 calendar days to report loss or damage.

Up to 9 months after delivery date

Sign in to the Defense Personal Property System or DPS and submit itemized claims for any lost or damaged items for full replacement/repair value, or FRV, provided notice of loss or damage was submitted or provided to the TSP within 75 or 180 calendar days (as applicable based on shipment pick up date)

Between 9 months and 2 years after delivery day

Contact your service branch military claims office for help receiving depreciated replacement value, or repair cost, whichever is the lesser of the two.

30/60 calendar days after claim submission

If your household goods shipment was picked up prior to May 15, 2020, your TSP should pay, deny or make an offer within 60 calendar days of receipt of a complete claim submission.

If your household goods shipment was picked up May 15, 2020 and after, your TSP should pay, deny or make an offer on all claims valued at $1,000 or less within 30 calendar days of receipt of the claim and within 60 calendar days of receipt on all other claims.

Note: If you file a Loss/Damage Report, you can submit claims for any additional lost or damaged items discovered after the initial 75 or 180 calendar day window, even if it wasn’t included on the original Loss/Damage Report. Contact your military claims office to request a waiver and to discuss good cause for the delay. Good cause may include, but is not limited to, an officially recognized absence or hospitalization during some or all of the 75 day or 180 calendar days after delivery.

Quick claim settlement option

Instead of using the traditional filing method described above, if the delivering TSP offers, you may file a quick claim settlement outside of DPS to promptly resolve minor loss or damage (not to exceed $1,000). You will file paperwork on delivery day with the TSP and payment will be sent within five calendar days of claim submission. While you cannot file claims on those specific items later, you may still use DPS to file claims for other lost or damaged items discovered after delivery.

Residential damage claims

If your TSP causes any damage to your home or residence, you can file a Real Property Damage claim to be reimbursed. Follow these steps to file a Real Property Damage claim.

Step 1: Document the damage on the day it occurs
Conduct a pre and post walk-around with the TSP and note any damage, both interior and exterior, in writing. Take pictures for your records. An example of damage might include scratched hardwood floors, dented walls, torn grass, etc.

Step 2: Submit a claim
Contact the TSP directly within seven calendar days from the last date they were at your residence. The TSP may require you to submit a DP3 Real Property Damage Form.

Step 3: Conduct an inspection
The TSP will schedule an inspection within 15 calendar days of notification. They will arrange for a repair firm to inspect your property damage. The repair estimate will be shared with you to determine payment.

If you have any problems negotiating settlement, you should contact your local transportation office or MCO for further assistance/guidance. Be aware that they may suggest you consult with your local legal office and seek assistance from an attorney.

Inconvenience claims

An inconvenience claim is a payment to you from your TSP to offset expenses incurred by you and your dependents because you are not able to use necessary items in your shipment to establish your household due to the TSP’s inability to meet required pickup and delivery dates. An inconvenience claim is authorized and payable when:

  • The TSP fails to pick up a shipment upon the agreed date.
  • The TSP fails to deliver on or before the required delivery date, provided you are in possession of residence and are available to receive the delivery.
  • The TSP places your shipment into storage in transit, or SIT, without you being notified.
  • You have requested for your shipment to be released from SIT and the carrier is unable to deliver the shipment out of SIT within the following dates:
    • Within seven government business days from the date you make your first contact requesting delivery or
    • Within two government business days, when your requested delivery date is more than seven business days out.

You will be notified by your TSP if a delay is expected to occur with your shipment. This normally happens a few days prior to the scheduled delivery day but could be as late as on the day of scheduled delivery. You should contact your local transportation office if you believe you are owed an inconvenience claim and the TSP has not already offered you a way to submit a claims form.

For shipments picked up prior to May 15, 2020, the TSP will reimburse you for reasonable out-of-pocket expenses documented by receipts. Tangible household items paid for by the TSP may be reclaimed upon delivery of your shipment. For household good shipments picked up May 15, 2020 or later, there is a baseline reimbursement of the local per diem 100% rate for meals and incidental expenses for the member only, based on the applicable pick-up or delivery location. No receipts are needed for the first seven calendar days. Visit the Defense Travel Management Office website to get M&IE per diem rates. Unaccompanied baggage shipment claims are not paid based on per diem and require receipts showing actual expenses.

Tangible household items paid for by the TSP may be reclaimed upon delivery of your shipment. Contact your TSP before purchasing any out-of-pocket expenses to avoid issues.

Note: The customer will be authorized either the per diem amount or the actual out-of-pocket expenses whichever is greater. All expenses claimed beginning the eighth calendar day must be documented with receipts.

Download the Filing an Inconvenience Claim Handout to use as a reference guide.

Privately owned vehicle, or POV, claims

You have two options for filing a POV loss or damage claim: you can submit and settle your claim directly with International Auto Logistics, or you can transfer your claim to your service branch military claims office. You can access IAL’s claims information at PCSmyPOV or check out the POV Claims brochure.

If you want to file your POV claim with your service branch MCO, visit Military OneSource Customer Service Contacts for Your Military PCS and look under the Claims section for your service branch contact information.

POV inconvenience claims

If you’re a service member, you may be reimbursed for rental car and lodging expenses if your POV is not available for pick-up on the required delivery date. The government will reimburse you up to $30 per day for the first seven calendar days, not to exceed $210. After that time, the contractor may be responsible for paying inconvenience claims over the government’s maximum allowance. IAL will consider your claim and pay, decline or make a firm settlement offer in writing within 40 calendar days. Once your vehicle is made available for pickup, IAL is no longer responsible for paying an inconvenience claim.

If you’re a civilian employee, you can file an inconvenience claim if your POV misses its required delivery date—even though there is no rental car authority for civilian employees. IAL will pay, decline or make a firm settlement offer to you, in writing, within 40 calendar days of your claim date.

Military OneSource is here to support your move process and make your claim filing as easy as possible. If you have questions or need help finding information, consultants are available 24/7 to connect you to the resources you need. Call 800-342-9647, use OCONUS calling options, or schedule live chat.

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