Complaint / review text:
On October 26,2004 Global Ocean Freight started packing our belongings as per the contract we signed with their agent Trans Global Moving.
We asked Global Ocean Freight to pack only certain furniture, since we did the packing ourselves. But when we checked, the moving people started packing and wrapping everything. We asked them to stop and told the supervisor about it, who replied the packing charges, would not exceed $500.00. This statement was later changed to 500 cubic feet, which equals $1,250.
When we arrived in the Dominican Republic, Global Ocean Freight told us the container would be already on its way and send us the complete invoice. We found out, that the container had not even left Los Angeles though.informing Global Ocean Freight, we were told that they needed my social security number to proceed with customs clearance, which we provided and were told again the container would be on its way. Two weeks after the container was picked up at our home in Stevenson Ranch, we found out that the container still had not left Los Angeles, to the contrary to what Global Ocean Freight told us. According to our previous discussions, our container was supposed be already in the Dominican Republic.
The entire handling and lack of communication looked odd to us, especially when we received another invoice, without signature and filled out by hand from a company we never heard of before. The company called Priced Transfer obviously held our container for customs verification. We were not informed by Global Ocean Freight and we decided to pay in increments whenever we received status updates, because we assumed we were scammed and our belongings were lost. Price transfer charged fees of $2,412.80 for container of storage and customs services which equaled about 1/3 of the entire moving costs. The container had been at their facility for twelve days and Global Ocean Freight did not inform us about the delay, because they claim, they simply did not know. Since we refused to pay until we received an update from them, Global Ocean Freight charged a late fee of $500.00, without further explanation why the fee was so high, actually Global Ocean Freight did not even handle the container at that time. We paid in increments whenever we received updates from Global Ocean Freight, but unfortunately they refused to call us and their updates consisted of mere payment reminders. End of December, two months after our goods were packed, we called Stephanie at Global Ocean Freight to ask about the whereabouts of our entire household and discuss their services. But Stephanie did not want to talk to us. She said she had nothing to say, everything had already been said, though this was the first time we called and she would not have the desire to talk to us. She would go home now and all the problems were our fault anyway. We would have to pay for any additional charges if we would like to receive our belongings back. No word where our container was.
On January 1st we were informed by the local agent, that our container had arrived on December 25th. No explanation why we were told eight days after the fact. The local agent invited us to their office just to yell at us in front of his employees, because we refused to pay the remaining balance without verifying that our container really had arrived. When we were able to verify the container, it was obvious that the container had been opened and repacked without any respect for our property. Our car was scratched, our mattresses were full of shoeprints and most of our goods had been damaged.
The agent and Global Ocean Freight were informed about the facts and we were told to file a damage report when the goods would be unpacked in our apartment. At this time Global Ocean Freight already knew, they would not pay for the damages.
In the meantime we had to get the goods through customs. The agent was nowhere to be seen and the documentation he prepared for us was incomplete at at-least two occasions. He claimed he didnt know about the new laws and regulations.
When we complained to Global Ocean Freight and told them we would make this public we were threatened with their lawyers and were told they would cease all support, so our cargo would not be released. Furthermore, Global Ocean Freight threatened us that the container would now be sent back to the US and our goods were to be sold to cover the open balance.
A hold fee of $500 was added to our bill and we were told the reason was that we tried to release the cargo without full payment, which is impossible since Global Ocean Freight held back the complete documentation of our container. Without it, our goods could not be released.in other words Global Ocean Freight claimed that we tried to steal a 40 container from a restricted customs area in an international harbor at a time, when we didnt even have mattresses to sleep on.
Asking who made this false allegation, we were told by GOF the agent informed them, but when we talked to the agent, we gained another yelling session and were thrown out of his office.
Making GOF aware of what happened, they changed their story and claimed the steamship line wanted to secure their container.
We called Evergreen and DFI which did not know anything about additional fees. Since harbor fees are extremely expensive we decided to pay the remaining balance, but Global Ocean Freight needed 8 days to add the payments up. At this time we were also reimbursed $1,000.00 by Price Transfer because we overpaid their services. Global Ocean Freight held back $500.00 to cover the additional hold fee after they told us twice they would waive it. We were informed that we would receive the other $500.00 back if we sign a waiver not to sue or demand any compensation.
Since we had not received any information about how the damaged furniture would be handled we did not want to sign this waiver until all issues were resolved.
Sure enough, while handling our furniture the local agent completely destroyed or entertainment center by dropping it, while I was standing right next to it, and also scratched and dented our Fridge, which was in an immaculate condition when it left the container at destination.
Making Global Ocean Freight and Price Transfer aware of the damages, both of them refused to compensate the loss, making each other responsible for the reimbursement.
Global Ocean Freight claims that all damages were incurred while Price Transfer and Homeland Security handled our goods including the fridge and the entertainment center which their agent damaged right before our eyes. He even signed the damage report admitting his fault.
Price Transfer claims that all goods were already damaged when they arrived. Unfortunately Price Transfer refuses to give us the seal number of the container when they received it, to verify if the container was opened between loading and customs verification. They also do not consider the footprints our mattresses or the Homeland security tape on the damaged goods. Our sofa chair was handled with such a brute force, that the interior frame broke, my sons computer was handled in a way that some of the cables were ripped out of their sockets. Neither Global Ocean Freight nor Price Transfers responded to our claims and refused to pay for damages. Global Ocean Freight even refuses to pay out the overpaid amount without signing their waiver.
It took Global Ocean Freight 5 months to deliver our shipment, which was supposed to arrive after 3 to 4 weeks. We spent Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year and my birthday without furniture, mattresses or other household goods. They blame us for delay, because we paid in increments, but even after full payment it took them 3 months to deliver their so called door-to-door service. Global Ocean Freight never apologized for the false information or the delays that caused us to be suspicious and pay only after receiving comprehensible updates.
Global Ocean Freight kept overpaid charges and refuses to pay them out without waiver
Global Ocean Freight did not release our cargo upon full payment
Global Ocean Freight did not explain and verify procedure for damaged goods, though requested several times
Global Ocean Freight refuses to pay for furniture damaged by their personnel during handling
Global Ocean Freight made up fictitious charges
and refuses to deliver any related statement or proof
Global Ocean Freight and their local agent Latino Express delayed the freight release process unnecessarily which led to additional storage costs
Global Ocean Freight and Latino Express did not have customs documentations properly prepared on at least two appointments with customs
Global Ocean Freight held the container for ransom
Global Ocean Freight lied about the whereabouts of the container on at least two occasions
Global Ocean Freight promised solutions for complaints, but refused to know anything about the issues as soon as the container was in their custody
It took Global Ocean Freight 5 months to deliver our cargo.
Global Ocean Freight employees complain that medical insurance is part of their contract, but all medical bills have to be sent to the office and are reimbursed through the company