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benalex
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Maybe, but probably not. It depends on the details. Who hired the appraiser, you, the jeweler who sold it or someone else entirely? What did the report say in terms of definition of value? Was this a new purchase? What were the specs and what was the transaction price? Was the value conclusion on the report signficantly different from the transaction price? You say it wasn't properlly graded. Can you explain what you mean by that? When you describe yourself as underinsured, what do you mean?

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Thanks for your reply.

 

My wife had the ring appraised at the request of the insurance company. She was not aware of the GIA certification or laser inscription. The ring was purchased 10 yrs ago.

 

Not a new purchase; just new insurance policy. The policy is a stated value policy and is in the exact amount of the appraisial as written by the Jeweler of our choice.

 

The insurance company's jewler valued my initial partial loss (ring needs recasting and diamond replacement) claim for approx $7k. Then I remembered the GIA cert and they said my claim would be approx $9k but that is above my policy limits.

 

The Jeweler evalation of .15 carat smaller (.8 vs .95) , H vs D color, Si2 vs. VS1 plus the other info on the GIA dossier.

 

Also the wedding band and engagement ring were soldered together and should been listed as a single ring rather than 2 separate rings( so says the insurance co.) This fact would have also increased my stated value policy by adding the value of the two rings together and would have "covered" the $9k loss.

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You are not in a good place. The description of what you insured is significantly different from what you had (a 0.95 D/VS1 is about twice the price of a 0.80 H/SI2). But you bound the policy for a 0.80 H/SI2, and this is what the insurer is contractually committed to replace.

 

What I don't understand - though it matters little at this point - is why did you not check the reason for the significant discrepancy from the appraiser's conclusion to what the GIA report said. If the appraiser is the same as the jeweller that sold you the diamond, this is even less easy to understand - are you sure that your lost stone actually did fit the GIA report?

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This is at least partially self inflicted. The problem, as Davide points out, is that you failed to show the appraiser the GIA report,and you didn't read the report before you submitted it the insurance company. There is a significant discrepancy and the time and place to have this fight is at the appraisers office before you even bound the policy. At this point I think you'll be hard pressed to demonstrate that what the appraiser saw was a GIA/D/VS1 and they misgraded it.

 

The two rings vs. one ring thing is confusing. Although it's true that they would normally be valued as a single item, I presume you lost both and the fact that they were attached together at the time doesn't really affect the gestaldt of the claim all that much. If you had a valid $7k policy (or whatever your limit is) on one and $2k on the other, I think you have a case for a $9k claim with possibly 2 deductibles depending on the details of your policy

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The loss was a partial loss; the diamond lost and setting broken. The fact that I had two separate rings on the policy does not allow adding the values together to get a larger policy amount.

 

Memory lapse and unable to locate the GIA too blame for on my end.

 

Even so:

 

Shouldn't I be able to justifiably rely on the appraiser to accurately evaluate the diamond?

Is it neglectful to be so inaccurate?

Should he have noticed the GIA inscription?

Should he know that 2 rings soldered together is 1 ring?

 

 

Unless the jeweler that sold me the ring gave me the wrong diamond or the jeweler that appraised it switched it during cleaning it would have to be the same diamond.

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Girdle inscriptions can be covered by prongs. It is not unreasonable or uncommon to miss it.

Mistaking a D for H is a significant error

Mistaking VS1 for SI2 is a significant error

Mistaking 0.95 for 0.80 is a significant error

 

 

Here's the problem: What we don't know is if the diamond they examined is the same as the diamond you were sold and/or the diamond described on that report. In terms of legal sorts of liability, that's a big enough hole in our case to drive a truck through. I agree that it sounds like you received a bad service, that you relied on a person who presented themselves as a professional, and and that you now are suffering problems as a direct result of that reliance. Thats the basis of a liability exposure for the appraiser and I would love to see more incompetent appraisers get whacked for their damages but your case doesn't sound like one that'll fly, at least not in the courts. Have you talked to the appraiser about it?

 

 

Again I ask, was there a policy in place before the appraisal? Was it by the same company? What did it say?

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[snip]Shouldn't I be able to justifiably rely on the appraiser to accurately evaluate the diamond?

Yes, you should. But at this point in time it is difficult to demonstrate that he hasn't done a proper job. As you point out below, it is possible (however unlikely) that the diamond was switched at some point - you'd have a tough job to prove that this wasn't the case.

 

Is it neglectful to be so inaccurate?

Of course it is - though proving negligence to a standard that would satisfy a court of law is a completely different question. Picture the following: the appraiser depicts you as someone who is trying to commit insurance fraud by claiming for a higher value stone than what you owned. How do you prove that this is not the case, and that he is guilty at the very least of incompetence?

 

Should he have noticed the GIA inscription?

He should, but the inscription by itself means nothing. Getting a laser inscription done is relatively easy.

 

Should he know that 2 rings soldered together is 1 ring?

That depends on how you (and he) decided to describe the item. This is a wonderful escape clause for the insurance company.

 

Unless the jeweler that sold me the ring gave me the wrong diamond or the jeweler that appraised it switched it during cleaning it would have to be the same diamond.

Not necessarily; purely hypothetically, as well as the jeweller and the appraiser you could have switched the diamond yourself (with the help of another jeweller), I am not in the least implying that you did this - I am just saying that it is possible, and as such it again provides the insurance company with a way of minimizing its losses.

 

Unfortunately, you have no proof that you ever had a D/VS1/0.95. You simply have a GIA report for one. What does the jeweller's receipt/invoice state (if it exists and you still have it)?

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I understand the problem you're having with 2 items. If it were 1 item then the 'partial' loss might be as much as 100% of the total but since they are 2, and you still have 1 of them in undamaged condition, the loss maxes out at 100% of the damaged one.

 

That actually has more to do with the insurance company than the appraiser and they don't all handle it the same way. Look into the 'pair and set' clause of your policy. This has to do with the way they handle things like a pair of earrings where you lose only one. Some will pay only half the value since you only lost half of the goods and some will pay the whole thing since the usefulness of a single earring is decidedly less than half the usefulness of a matched pair. The same applies to a wedding set that is designed to work together as a set. Loose the engagement ring (for example) and the remaining wedding band is now of lower usefulness as a result, even though it's undamaged. It doesn' t matter if they're soldered together beyond the fact that this makes it difficult to lose them separately.

Edited by denverappraiser
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Davidelevi,

 

We did previously have a policy years ago but have no info on . It was from the same company. It wouldn't hurt to ask them.

I sure they would say "how do we no what changes were made to the ring......."

 

My original receipt says "GIA Certified .95ct".

 

The appraiser stated that the diamond has to be removed to accurately assess the color and size. We went back and forth respectfully for a while until I think he understood the effect his decisions had on my insurance claim. He finally said that he would 'work with me" on a new purchase but offered no numbers.

 

I think I'll see if someone else wants to sell me something first!

 

 

 

 

Denverappraiser,

 

Yes. I would only change from your statement to " ...but since they were LISTED as two....". The insurance company says they paid out according to the policy as written.

 

 

Thank you both for your thoughts. I learned and I hope others have learned.

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The policy as written is absolutely the item that governs the deal. Nothing else counts a whit. They're interpreting what it says, you're interpreting another way, and I'm just guessing.

 

*IF* you had a policy bound on a 0.95 and *IF* you had evidence that the item was lost or somehow became something else between 1 and 10 years ago, and *IF* you didn't discover this until recently, and *IF* you had an insurance policy in force that entire time that covered that sort of loss, you *MAY* have a valid claim against the OLD policy for a partial loss (loss in value). They, in turn, may attempt to subrogate against the appraiser if they can make a case but that becomes their problem instead of yours.

 

#2 The appraiser will 'work with you' on a new purchase to make up for a screw up on a prior report! Yikes. My fingers hurt just typing that.

Edited by denverappraiser
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