Mom says moving company takes over a month to deliver family's stuff

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - Imagine moving your family across the country and your moving van doesn't show up.

That's exactly what Caroline Hull says happened to her and her family.

"We've moved to this new place and I can't get settled, and we homeschool, and a bunch of our stuff is on the truck as well," Hull told our 11 Call for Action team during an interview in May.

At the time of the interview, Hull had still not received her things and had no way of knowing if she ever would.

Her stuff finally showed up, but only after five weeks of living in an empty house.

Hull says her family was thrilled when her husband got a job in Colorado Springs.

"We were super excited because we've always wanted to move to Colorado."

She found Unified Van Lines online and says she looked them up on the Better Business Bureau and the U.S. Department of Transportation's website. The reviews she found were all good.

In February, Hull signed a contract with the company and says she paid them more than $6,000 to pick up and store her belongings from their Nashville, Tennessee home until they found a house in Colorado Springs. Eventually, the family found a new home they loved and called Unified to let them know they were ready for delivery.

Then things began to get weird.

Hull says company representatives started giving her excuses for why her things were things could not be delivered -- a different excuse nearly every week.

"Then they told us they were going to deliver last week ... when we called them because we hadn't heard from them, they told us the truck had broke down."

Hull and her family lived in an empty house for five weeks, a full week after we interviewed her and she told us: "I have kids and we've been living in this empty house for four weeks, and I don't know if it's going to continue and I don't know what I'm supposed to do."

Her children slept on an air mattress, the family used camping chairs in their living room, and most of the homeschool supplies she uses to teach her two young daughters were nowhere to be found.

Caroline says she only gets voicemail when she calls the company, and when she does get a call back, she gets an ever-changing list of reasons for the hold-up.

11 Call for Action reached out to Unified and also only got voicemail. Repeated calls to the company were not returned.

The Call for Action team also contacted the U.S. Department of Transportation. Representatives there told 11 News that Unified Van Lines has an "out-of-service order." That means they're not supposed to be moving people's things using their trucks under their DOT number.

A DOT representative told 11 News reporter Dustin Cuzick that the company failed to undergo a safety inspection in March and that's why the order is in place. In addition, the department says Unified Van Line's insurance lapsed in early April, another reason the company should not be moving people's things using their own trucks.

When Hull's things were finally delivered to her Colorado Springs home on May 21, she says the delivery truck was from another company and she still had to pay them another $3,500 -- the remaining balance of her bill -- to get her things back.

"I'm very angry. I'm also like, it's hard because I go from this phase of being super stressed out about, it to being super angry, to, like, trying to stay really positive because it is just stuff, but it's my stuff."

11 News checked, and Unified Van Lines has had 57 complaints (as of May 31, 2018) filed with the U.S. Department of Transportation. We've posted a link under the "Find it" tab on the KKTV.com homepage that will allow you to search for moving companies with the U.S. Department of Transportation.