May 2001

JEWELRY INSURANCE ISSUES (formerly IM News), provides monthly insight and information for jewelry insurance agents, underwriters and claims adjusters.

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Jewelry Insurance Issues

Table of Contents

Click on article titles in red

2017

Moral Hazard, Documents and the Bottom Line - January

Ruby and Jade - February

How to mail a diamond - March

Jewelry Insurance Appraisal Standards: JISO - April

Describing a gem's color - May

Why not just put jewelry on the Homeowner policy? - June

GIA Diamond Reports - July

Not just a pretty face - August

Moral Hazards on the rise - September

2016

Inflated appraisals—alive & well! Shady lab reports—alive & well! MORAL HAZARD—ALIVE & WELL! - January

Clarity Enhancements v. Inherent Vice - February

How green is my emerald? - March

Cruise Jewelry - What's the problem? - April

Crown of Light®- how special is it? - May

Diamonds at Auction — Big gems, big prices, and the trickle-down effect - June

Are you sure her wedding jewelry is covered? - July

What Affects Jewelry Valuation? - August

What to look for – on the jewelry appraisal, on the cert, and on other documents - September

Bigger & Bigger Diamonds - October

Scam season is always NOW - November

Ocean Diamonds - December

2015

Pair & Set Jewelry Claims and the Accidental Tourist - January

Is that brand-name diamond a cut above the others? - February

Vacation Jewelry – Insurer beware! - March

Apple's Smartwatch – The risk of a wrist computer - April

Why you should read that appraisal - May

Smoking Gun! - June

Color-Grading Diamond: the Master Stones - July

Padparadscha—a special term for a special stone - August

Jewelry Appraisal Fees - September

Insuring a Rolex - steps to take, things to consider - October

Diamond camouflage and how to see through it - November

GIA Hacked! - December

2014

Who Grades? - January

Sales, discounts, price reductions, bargains, specials, mark-downs . . . . and valuation - February

Credential Conundrum - March

Frankenwatches - April

Fakes, fakes, and more fakes - May

Marketing Confusion — What is this gem anyway? - June

12 Reasons Not to Insure a Rolex! - July

Why NOT to insure a Rolex: Reasons 5-7 - August

Why NOT to insure a Rolex: Reasons 8-10 - September

Why NOT to insure a Rolex: Reasons 11-12 - October

The Doublet Masquerade - November

Is the gem suitable for the jewelry? Is this a good insurance risk? - December

2013

Wedding Rings on HO? NO! - January

Silver: the new gold - February

Point Protection - March

Tiffany v. Costco - April

What counts in valuing a diamond? - May

Appraising Jewelry - What's a credential worth? - June

A Cutting Question concerning vintage diamonds - July

Synthesized Diamonds - Scam update - August

Pretty in Pink - Kunzite on parade... - September

Preventing jewelry losses - October

Scratch a diamond and you'll find . . .??? - November

Synthetics in the Mix - December

2012

Advanced Gem Lab - A deeper look at colored gems - January

Whose Diamond? - February

Appraisal Inflation - It Keeps On Keeping On - March

Big Emerald - April

Changing colors and making gems: Are we seeing "beautiful lies"? - May

Diamonds - Out of Africa. . . or out of a lab? - June

Appraiser's Dream Contest - July

GIA & the Magic of Certificates - August

Pricey when it's hot: What happens when it's not? - September

Fooling With Gold - October

Tanzanite – December's stone - November

Branding Diamonds - What do those names mean? - December

2011

Unappraisable Jewelry - January

Replicas - Are they the real thing? - February

Composite Rubies- From bad to worse - March

Jewelry Hallmark - A Well-Kept Secret - April

Non-Disclosure: Following a Trail of Deception - May

Preserving the Diamond Dream - June

Spinel in the Spotlight - July

Jewelry 24/7 - Electronic Shopping - August

Diamond Bubble? - September

Disclosure: HPHT - October

"Hearts & Arrows" Diamonds - November

How a Gem Lab Looks at Diamonds - December

2010

Emeralds - And What They Include - January

Pink Diamonds: From Astronomical to Affordable - February

Palladium-the Other Precious White Metal - March

Bridal Jewelry - April

The Corundum Spectrum - May

How Photos Cut Fraud - and help the insured - June

The Price of Fad - July

Old Cut, New Cut-It's All about Diamonds - August

EightStar Diamonds-Beyond Ideal - September

The Hazard of Fakes - October

Jewelry with a Story - November

Counterfeit Watches - December

2009

Blue Diamond-cool, rare and expensive-sometimes - January

Turning Jewelry into Cash—
Strategy in a Bad Economy
- February

Enhancing the Stone - March

Being Certain about the Cert - April

Every Picture Tells a Story - May

Color-Grading Diamonds - June

The Newest Diamond Substitute - July

What Happens to Stolen Jewelry - August

Jewelry As an Investment - September

Black Diamond: Paradox of a Gem - October

Protect Your Homeowners Market—Keep Jewelry OFF HO Policies! - November

What’s So Great about JISO Appraisal Forms & Standards? - December

2008

Garnet - and Its Many Incarnations - January

Organic Gems - February

Do Your Jewelry Insurance Settlements Make You Look Bad? - March

Don't Be Duped by Fake JISO Appraisal - April

Diamonds in the Rough - May

The Cultured Club - June

Sapphire-Gem Superstar - July

It's a Certified Diamond! 
- But who's saying so?
- August

FTC Decides: Culture Is In! - September

Paraiba Tourmaline – What's in a Name? - October

How Fancy is Brown? - November

CZ – The Great Pretender - December

2007

Moissanite's New Spin - January

Online Jewelry - Buying and Insuring - February

Blood Diamonds - March

Damaged Jewelry, Don't Assume!- April

Chocolate Pearls - May

Appraisal Puff-Up vs Useful Appraisal - June

It's Art, but is it Jewelry?
- July

Diamonds Wear Coats of Many Colors - August

DANGER! eBay Jewelry "Bargains" - September

TV Shopping for Jewelry - October

Enhanced Emerald: clever coverup - November

How do you like your rubies -
leaded or unleaded?
- December

2006

The New Platinum: A Story of Alloys - January

Ruby Ruse - February

How Big are Diamonds Anyway? - March

GIA Diamond Scandal
Has Silver Lining for Insurers
- April

Watch Out for Big-Box Retailers Insurance Appraisals - May

Mixing It Up: Natural and Synthetic Diamonds Together - June

Tanzanite - Warning: Fragile - July

Red Diamonds - August

Inflated Valuations & Questionable Certificates - September

Emeralds - October

Where Do Real Diamonds Come From? - November

Counterfeit Watches - The Mushroom War - December

2005

The Lure of Colored Diamonds - January

Synthetic Colored Diamonds - February

Watches: What to Watch for - March

When is a Pear not a Pair? - April

The Truth About Topaz - May

White Gold: How White is White? - June

One of a Kind - or Not - July

Jewelry in Disguise - August

Valued Contract for Jewelry? Proceed with Caution! - September

Antiques, Replicas and All Their Cousins
October

Grading the Color of Colored Diamonds
November

New GIA Cut Grade for Diamonds - December

2004

Synthetic Diamonds - and Insuring Tips - January

Bogus Appraisals and Fraud - February

A Picture is Worth Thousands of Dollars - March

Don't be Duped by Fracture Filling - April

Gem Scams Point to Need for Change - May

What is a Good Appraisal - June

4Cs of Color Gemstones - July

Gem Laser Drilling: The Next Generation - August

Why Update an Appraisal? - September

When to Recommend an Appraisal Update or a Second Appraisal - October

Secrets of Sapphire - November

Will the Real Ruby Please Stand Up - December

2003

Mysterious Orient:
A Tale of Loss
- January

Bogus Diamond Certificates and Appraisals - February

Can Valuations be Trusted? - March

Spotting a Bogus Appraisal or Certificate - April

Counterfeit Diamond Certificates - May

Case of the Mysterious "Rare" Sapphires - June

Politically Correct Diamonds - July

Name Brand Diamonds - September

Princess Cut: Black Sheep of Diamonds - October

Reincarnate as a Diamond - November

Synthetic Diamonds - December

2002

Irradiated Mail/Irradiated Gems - January

Fake Diamonds (Moissonite) - February

GIA Diamond Report - March

AGS and Other Diamond Certificates - April

Colored Stone Certificates - May

Damaged Jewelry: Don't Pay for Nature's Mistakes - June

The Case of the "Self-Healing" Emerald - July

Mysterious Disappearance: Case of the Missing Opals - August

The Discount Mirage - September

What Can You Learn from Salvage? - October

Gaining from Partial Loss - November

Year in Review - December

2001

Colored Diamonds - January

Good as Gold - February

Disclose Gem Treatments - March

FTC Jewelry Guidelines - April

Myths Part I: Each Piece is Unique - May

Myths Part II: Myths, Lies, & Half-Truths - June

New Trend: Old Cut Stones - October

The Appraisal Process - November

Year in Review - December

2000

Deceptive Pricing - January

Gems - Natural or Manmade - February

Jeweler/Appraisal Credentials - March

Fracture Filling - April

Salvage Jewelery - May

Gem Treatments - June

Don't Ask/Don't Tell - A Buying Nightmare - July

Laser Drilling of Diamonds - August

Jeweler Ethics or the Lack Thereof - September

Gem Scam - October

The Truth about Clarity Grading - November

Year in Review - December

 

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Myths, Lies, and Half-truths, Part 1*

Each Piece is Unique

"Most every jewelry loss is unique in the sense that an item bearing the same exact description has never been lost before."

This is hardly the case. The majority of jewelry sold comes from outlets like Zales and Macy's, and a certain percentage of these are involved in losses. Such pieces are not unique, handcrafted items, but mass-produced work. They can be described through manufacturer and style number, as well as other details.

Jeweler/appraisers like to omit mentioning the manufacturer and style number because such information would: a) destroy the romantic illusion that all jewelry (no matter how low-priced) is somehow one-of-a-kind and irreplaceable; and b) allow the customer to comparison shop.

The fact is that much jewelry comes from suppliers. Not only chain outlets like Zales but also independent jewelers use these suppliers. If a customer comes in saying she wants a bracelet in style #123 from Such-And-Such manufacturer, the jeweler can find it in the supplier's wholesale catalog, add his own reasonable markup, and give her a price. She could go to several jewelers, then choose the best price.

Such a scenario could eliminate the effect of advertisements for "HUGE DISCOUNTS! 60% OFF!" A customer who comparison shops would easily see through a store's artificially high "list price," and find that the "sale" was no bargain at all.

For the insurer, comparison shopping would hopefully mean that the valuation on the appraisal would reflect the store's selling price—it would not be an artificially high "list price" that no one ever pays. For the adjuster, having the manufacturer and style number for pricing a replacement would greatly simplify the claims process.

It happens that the law is on the customer's (and insurer's) side. The National Gold and Silver Marking Act requires that any jewelry marked as karat gold (e.g. 14K) or silver be also stamped with the manufacturer's trademark. The purpose of the law is to identify manufacturers and hold them responsible for their claims. If the manufacturer's mark is not on the piece, the customer has reason to doubt the claim that the piece is karat gold or silver.

* Claims, a magazine published by National Underwriter, recently carried an article discussing the importance of appraisals in jewelry loss investigation http://www.claimsmag.com/ Issues/archives/ feature.asp. This issue is part of a series in which we use the Claims article as a jumping-off place for discussing some common misunderstandings about jewelry and jewelry insurance.

FOR AGENTS & UNDERWRITING

The law requires that the manufacturer's trademark be on any jewelry marked as gold or silver, but the jeweler should disclose the name of the manufacturer using this mark. Although the law requires the manufacturer's mark only if a karatage mark is present, each piece has a manufacturer. Insist that the manufacturer's name appear on the appraisal, along with the style number, if there is one. Explain to policyholders that this information gives a way to verify the value of the piece and, in the event of a loss, insures an appropriate replacement. You might also mention how the law regarding manufacturers' marks was established to protect the consumer.

Disclosure of the jewelry's manufacturer makes it easier for the consumer to buy at a competitive price, and more likely that the fair selling price will be listed on the appraisal.

The ACORD 78/79 appraisal requires jewelers to appraise at their usual selling price. On the 78/79 form, just above the appraiser's signature is the following guarantee:

"The values set forth herein are an estimate of the current replacement cost at which the appraised jewelry may be purchased in a retail jewelry store and reflects the price at which the appraised or similar jewelry may be purchased at this store (unless stated otherwise)."

FOR CLAIMS

The jewelry manufacturer is almost never disclosed on an appraisal. This presents a greater challenge to the adjuster. Begin by asking the policyholder where the piece was purchased. If you know the seller, anyone doing jewelry replacement valuation can analyze who the seller does business with and determine the quality of merchandise the seller generally carries.

You might try calling the seller and asking who made the item. Mention the fact that the law requires disclosure of the manufacturer on all jewelry stamped with karatage.

When an appraisal lacks information on the manufacturer, notify the agent and recommend he be wary of other appraisals by the same appraiser. Suggest that he recommend ACORD 78/79 appraisals to his customers. Such communication between agents, underwriters and adjusters would make everyone's job easier and ultimately would benefit policyholders.

SPECIAL OFFER FOR AGENTS

Help your policyholders learn how to shop for jewelry. JCRS's Consumer Services Site can be incorporated into your own web site and function as a service to your customers.

Explore the Jewelry Consumer Service web site yourself, to see the wealth of jewelry information and shopping advice. Then contact JCRS about having this valuable resource linked to your agency's site.

 

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