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Insuring an antique engagement ring?

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memsy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
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44

I am an old user (mostly just a past lurker) and funny enough, didn''t even use pricescope when I got engaged because my husband had a family ring to give me. I''ve come back to PS for help with insurance questions. I hope this is the right forum- if not, please let me know and i''ll move my question. My ring is an antique- it was my husband''s great grandmother''s. According to the appraisal that we had done a year ago, the center stone is an old mine cut, 1.92 carats, SI, J-K color, set in platinum with four tiny stones set in on each side (kind of a pave look). The total carat weight according to the appraisal is 2.05 carats. The entire ring is antique- the setting along with the stones- although it was sized to fit me.


We have it insured with Travelers under a Personal Articles policy for the appraised value of $15,500. Obviously there is no "purchase price" that we have a record of because it is over or about 100 years old. We recently moved to a different borough in NYC and the rate went up 2 1/2 times. This led me to investigate my coverage options. Here is what I am trying to choose from. I would greatly appreciate any help.


We are eligible for USAA membership. Their quote was very competitive but I am not sure that I''m comfortable with their claims settlement procedures. They offer replacement at "like kind or value" or replacement cost if they can''t find a replacement- up to the limit. I could take steps to seriously document the ring - pictures, a more specific appraisal, etc., but the thought of not having control over the process makes me very nervous- especially with an antique ring that is really irreplaceable.
I have no idea what a similar ring might cost now and what really worries me is that it''s a very well cut diamond (at least to my untrained eye)- it faces up pretty white for a J-K. I just wouldn''t want them to make me take any old J-K SI stone.. if we had purchased this, we might have picked a smaller stone with a higher color. However, now that i''m used to the size, I would not want to downgrade that. Also, I work in insurance claims and am an attorney (although my world has nothing to do with property insurance), so I''m extremely knowledgeable about how claims get handled and mishandled.

Travelers offers agreed upon value. If anything happened resulting in a total loss, they would pay out the full limit. I am worried that i''m being penny wise and pound foolish by switching coverage.


I am told by my broker that Chubb has a very similar rate to Travelers and would also be agreed upon value.


Jewelers'' Mutual has an interesting option where you get to work with the Jeweler of your choice. Is that a good middle ground? Does anyone have any thoughts for me?

 

mrssalvo

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
19,132
I have mine with travelers and I love them. You might think about having the ring appraised and getting a realistic replacement value if you feel that 15 K is too high. why pay for coverage you don't need? in your situation I would make sure you get detailed documentation on the ring and make sure travelers will give you their cash value rider so if something did happen they would just cash you out and you could go buy whatever replacement you wanted. Travelers does offer this type of coverage.

deejay also has a jewelry rider with travelers and recently had to make a claim and said they were a dream to work with.
 

sanfranciscoellen

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 1, 2006
Messages
1,030
I have USAA, and just had to work with them when my ring was stolen. They were fabulous, as we have experienced with everything we do with USAA.... banking, renters, life, auto, brokerage, you name it.

All you need to do is have a reputable appraisal, and when you call to add the policy, send the appraisal to them, and ask them over the phone to add ALL of the details to the description; mm size, crown angles, table %, you name it, metal content of the ring, sidestone info, everything. And insure it for what you really would have to pay to replace it; around here, in San Francisco, that''s pretty steep! I found myself insuring my new OEC ring for way closer to retail than I had with my last ring, because it is not as easy to replace an antique as a newly cut stone from an online vendor.

They did offer to send me a stone to view, but I told them that my asscher diamond took me loads of research to find and the odds of me liking their generic whatever diamond was 0%. I told them nicely that it would be a waste of both of our time, and they didn''t press it... did the replacement research and cashed out at 100%.

I did not research other insurance, so I can''t speak to how they compare; but I wouldn''t worry about the replacement thing. What are the odds that they will find an antique stone in the EXACT color and EXACT size with the EXACT #''s? Zero!

Good luck!
 

memsy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
44
Thanks for the responses. It''s good to hear that people are happy with the claims services of both carriers. I guess my main concern is that this diamond seems hard to replace and I would not want to be forced to accept a stone i wasn''t happy with if (heaven forbid) I had a loss. But it is good to hear that USAA was reasonable about that sort of thing.

I guess I either get a more ''realistic'' appraisal and stick with Travelers or I seriously document my ring and go with USAA. If I chose the latter, how would I go about getting a full work-up on the ring? My appraisal is not extremely specific..

And, for fun, here''s a pic of the ring..

41509ering.jpg
 

memsy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
44
yikes- sorry about that file size! how do i take it off the post?? I''ll put up a smaller one!
 
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