Code Section Group

Business and Professions Code - BPC

DIVISION 8. SPECIAL BUSINESS REGULATIONS [18400 - 22948.25]

  ( Division 8 added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 44. )

CHAPTER 3.1. Household Movers Act [19225 - 19294]

  ( Chapter 3.1 added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. )

ARTICLE 1. General Provisions and Definitions [19225 - 19234.1]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. )

19225.
  

This chapter may be cited as the “Household Movers Act.”

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19225.5.
  

For purposes of this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires, the following provisions shall apply:

(a) “Broker” means a person engaged by others in the act of arranging, for compensation, the intrastate transportation of used household goods by a motor vehicle over the highways of this state for, or on behalf of, a shipper, a consignor, or a consignee.

(b) “Bureau” refers to the Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair, Home Furnishings, and Thermal Insulation, as established in Section 9810.

(c) “Chief” refers to the chief of the bureau.

(d) “Corporation” includes a corporation, a company, an association, and a joint stock association.

(e) “Department” refers to the Department of Consumer Affairs.

(f) “Director” refers to the Director of Consumer Affairs.

(g) “Fund” means the Household Movers Fund established pursuant to Section 19229.

(h) “Household mover” includes every corporation or person, their lessees, trustee, receivers, or trustees appointed by any court whatsoever, engaged in the permitted or unpermitted transportation for compensation or hire as a business by means of a motor vehicle or motor vehicles being used in the transportation of used household goods and personal effects over any public highway in this state. A broker, as defined in subdivision (a), shall be considered a household mover. The Legislature intends “household mover” to have the same meaning as “household goods carrier” in former Section 5109 of the Public Utilities Code, as that section read on June 30, 2018.

(i) “Inspector” refers to an inspector either employed by, or under contract to, the bureau.

(j) “Motor vehicle” means every motor truck, tractor, or other self-propelled vehicle used for transportation of property over the public highways, other than upon fixed rails or tracks, and any trailer, semitrailer, dolly, or other vehicle drawn thereby.

(k) “Owner,” with respect to a motor vehicle used in the transportation of property for compensation by a household mover, means the corporation or person who is registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles as the owner of the vehicle, or who has a legal right to possession of the vehicle pursuant to a lease or rental agreement.

(l) “Person” includes an individual, a firm, or a copartnership.

(m) “Public highway” includes every public street, road, or highway in this state.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19225.7.
  

In construing and enforcing the provisions of this chapter relating to citations and discipline, the act, omission, or failure of any officer, agent, or employee of any person or corporation, acting within the scope of his or her official duties or employment, is the act, omission, or failure of the employing person or corporation.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19225.9.
  

Every power granted to or duty imposed upon the director under this chapter may be exercised or performed in the name of the director by a deputy or assistant director or by the chief, subject to conditions and limitations that the director may prescribe.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19226.
  

The regulation of the transportation of used household goods and personal effects in a motor vehicle or motor vehicles over any public highway in this state shall be exclusively as provided in this chapter. Any provision of the Public Utilities Code in conflict with the provisions of this chapter does not apply to a household mover.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19227.
  

The transportation of used household goods and personal effects in any truck or trailer for compensation over any public highway in this state is a highly specialized type of truck transportation. This chapter is enacted for the limited purpose of providing necessary regulation for this specialized type of truck transportation only, and is not to be construed for any purpose as a precedent for the extension of that regulation to any other type of truck transportation not presently so restricted.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19228.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other law, and until the time the director adopts regulations implementing this chapter, powers granted to, or duties imposed on, the Public Utilities Commission pursuant to the former Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 5101) of Division 2 of the Public Utilities Code are transferred to, and may be exercised by, the director in administering this chapter.

(b) All rules, regulations, general orders, forms, and Maximum Rate Tariff 4, as most recently amended as of July 1, 2018, by the Public Utilities Commission, adopted, administered, or enforced by the Public Utilities Commission for purposes of implementing and administering the former Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 5101) of Division 2 of the Public Utilities Code, that are in effect immediately preceding July 1, 2018, shall remain in effect and shall be administered and enforced by the director, until the operative date of regulations adopted by the director to implement this chapter.

(c) Until the operative date of regulations implementing this chapter, household movers shall observe the rules, regulations, general orders, and Maximum Rate Tariff 4, as most recently amended as of July 1, 2018, by the Public Utilities Commission, that are administered and enforced by the director pursuant to this chapter. A violation of those rules, regulations, general orders, or tariff may be grounds for discipline.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19229.
  

(a) The Household Movers Fund is hereby established within the State Treasury. Moneys in the fund shall be used, upon appropriation by the Legislature, by the bureau for the administration of this chapter.

(b) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, all moneys, including fines or penalties imposed under this chapter, collected pursuant to this chapter shall be deposited into the fund.

(c) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) of Section 205, the Household Movers Fund is a special fund within the Professions and Vocations Fund and is subject to subdivision (b) of Section 205.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19229.1.
  

(a) The use of the public highways for the transportation of used household goods and personal effects for compensation is a business affected with a public interest. It is the purpose of this chapter to do all of the following:

(1) Preserve for the public the full benefit and use of public highways consistent with the needs of commerce without unnecessary congestion or wear and tear upon those highways.

(2) Secure to the people just, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory rates for transportation by household movers operating upon the highways.

(3) Secure full and unrestricted flow of traffic by motor carriers over the highways that will adequately meet reasonable public demands by providing for the regulation of rates of all household movers so that adequate and dependable service by all necessary household movers is maintained and the full use of the highways is preserved to the public.

(4) Promote fair dealing and ethical conduct in the rendition of services involving or incident to the transportation of household goods and personal effects.

(b) To achieve the purposes of subdivision (a), the bureau shall do all of the following:

(1) Prioritize the timely processing of applications and hold application workshops for potential applicants around the state.

(2) Enable electronic filing of applications, reports, and fee payments.

(3) Dedicate staff to answering telephone calls, mailings, and electronic inquiries from household movers.

(4) Prioritize the timely processing of consumer complaints.

(5) Implement electronic case tracking of complaints and their disposition.

(6) Implement a process for appropriate and timely enforcement against illegally operating household movers, including performing staff-driven investigations and enforcement through sting operations and other forms of presence in the field.

(7) Maintain relationships with, and implement outreach and education programs to, local law enforcement, district attorneys, and airports, and coordinate with law enforcement agencies pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 19283.1.

(8) Meet with household mover trade associations at least annually.

(9) Implement a consolidated case tracking system that integrates each of the transportation program core functions and data collection, administrative compliance details, complaints, and investigations.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19233.
  

This chapter shall not be construed as a regulation of commerce with foreign nations or among the several states, except insofar as those regulations are not prohibited under the provisions of the United States Constitution and the acts of the Congress of the United States.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19234.
  

The director, in accordance with the State Civil Service Act and Section 159.5, may appoint and fix the compensation of clerical, inspection, investigation, and auditing personnel, as well as a deputy chief, as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter. All such personnel shall perform their respective duties under the supervision and the direction of the chief.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

19234.1.
  

Protection of the public shall be the highest priority for the bureau in exercising its licensing, regulatory, and disciplinary functions under this chapter. Whenever the protection of the public is inconsistent with other interests sought to be promoted, the protection of the public shall be paramount.

(Added by Stats. 2017, Ch. 421, Sec. 8. (SB 19) Effective January 1, 2018. Operative July 1, 2018, pursuant to Section 19294.)

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