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A Lost Diamond-Any Guarantee from a Jeweller?

Modern jewellery is often set with extremely small diamonds held by minute little claws. Of these, some may fall out due to normal wear and tear, or when the item suffers a hard knock.  If jewellery is worn during gardening, mountaineering, sporting activities, even washing of steel cutlery, it will scratch over time, wear away and a gemstone may be lost.

A reputable jeweller will guarantee their products and workmanship up to a point. After all, a jeweller’s reputation is worth more to them than any item one can sell.

If a diamond is lost from a ring within a few weeks after purchase, it may be due to:

  1. Poor workmanship. The jeweller should then take responsibility and replace the stone.
  2. The ring was made smaller which caused the claws to open. Again, the jeweller should have made sure the stone is secure after the alteration, and take responsibility.
  3. If jewellery was damaged due to an accident, your insurer pays normally. Please Note: An expert will be able to determine whether claws have shifted or the ring itself has bent due to an accident.
  4. A diamond itself may break due to a heavy blow and fall from its setting. This is possible as a blow may damage a very thin girdle, or an existing crack in a low quality diamond may extend (get bigger) due to a severe blow.

However, if a diamond is lost from a ring some years after it was purchased,  no jeweller will take responsibility because:

  1. Fine jewellery is made from relatively soft metals and if the ring is subjected to extensive wear or rough handling, the claws will wear down and stones may be lost from the ring.
  2. Sometimes, insurers will replace the stones because they value the goodwill of their client. However, most insurance policies specify the item has to be maintained in good order and that the client is responsible to have it cleaned, inspected and revalued by a jeweller on a regular basis. If you buy a new car from a garage would you expect the garage to repair the engine for free after a few years?   Or, if you see an oil leak and continue to drive the car, the garage will take no responsibility when the engine blows up.
  3. A good jeweller will, in the above cases, offer to replace the lost item at a wholesale cost to keep the goodwill of his client and to make the financial loss as small as possible.




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