I’ve warned you of the bait and switch moving scams cropping up everywhere. In New Jersey, Progressive Movers and ABC Packing Services, have upped the ante in the bait and switch:
What a new low! Maybe the name Progressive Movers is fitting- a new way to scam people during a move- sex in exchange for YOUR personal belongings. At least, that’s what one woman alleges she experienced.
She was initially quoted a price of $210 for her in-state move, a total of 12 miles one-way. (A bargain, right?) Unfortunately, when the movers showed up at her moving destination (with her goods loaded in their truck still), they demanded she pay an extra $1100. When she told the movers she didn’t have the money, they offered to settle: if she would sleep with two guys at the moving company, they’d let her pay the originally quoted $210 and unload her belongings.
Another woman was given a quote for her move for $425 by the same moving outfit referenced above. The moving company then upped the quote to an interim amount of $895. Upon delivery of her goods, however, they held them for ransom, citing an additional $1200 in packing material costs.
Upon further investigation, it seems that Progressive Movers sweet spot for estimates hovers right at $210, with a total of 87 consumers alleging the bait-and-switch tactic was used on them, some for $210 and some for more.
It’s hard to fault any of these individuals because, in this day and age we’re all looking for the best price on everything. However, as I’ve said time and time again, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Unfortunately, this isn’t Progressive Movers or ABC Packing Services first moving scam rodeo! Back in 2010 Konstantin Egorov, one of the owners of Progressive Movers, entered into a consent order with the state of New Jersey agreeing to pay restitution to several consumers as well as pay the state over $20,000 in assessments over a three-year period. That order also included a $55,000 penalty, which was suspended provided that Egorov didn’t violate the state’s Public Movers Licensing Act.
Fortunately, the NJ Attorney General’s office as well as the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs obtained an order against Progressive Movers, Egorov and all of the names he’s operated under in the past (including ABC Packing Services, Inc., Modern One, Modern One Versatile Expert Relocation Service, M.O.V.E.R.S. Inc., and Modern M.O.V.E.R.S. Inc). The order temporarily shuts down the defendants’ businesses and sets the matter for hearing on June 15, 2012. At that time, the judge will decide whether the defendants’ businesses should remain shut down, pending the outcome of the state’s lawsuit.
The state’s lawsuit seeks full restitution for the affected consumers, as well as civil penalties, and repayment for the state’s investigative costs and attorneys’ fees.
The New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs has put together a guide to help consumer’s during their moves which you can find here:
Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!