need an opinion on shattered diamonds

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Mar 1, 2007
I need a professional opinion on the situation...
One of our customers called us little while ago and told me that a diamond fell out of an eternity band that we sold to him 2 months ago. We asked him to send the band back so we can take a look at it. When we got the ring we were absolutelly shocked. One diamond was missing even though the prongs were as even as on other diamonds and 2 out of 19 diamonds were completely shattered. It looked like somebody was hitting these 2 diamond long and hard. Another thing we noticed is that the most of the prongs were pressed in and created sharp edges. Itsl ike you hitting a metal on the top and it flats out and the edges on top become very sharp. So I contacted the buyer and asked him what happened to the ring. He told me that his wife wore this ring ring only on few occasions and the diamonds shattered on their own. He told me that went to a gemolgist and the gemologist stated that the diamonds shattered on their own because they had cracks in them. Now the diamonds clarity ranged from VS2 to SI1 so they were preety clean. I was trying to tell hm that a diamond cannot get shattered like that on its own even if it had a huge crack. But since the diamonds were VS-SI they didnt have any huge cracks or cracks at all. I didnt want to blame anybody I just stated facts but hes convinced that the 2 diamonds were shattered on their own. We do not even know what happened to the missing one. Now just for your info the diamonds were 0.23 ct each and set in platinum. I asked him to provide me with info of the gemologist so I can clarify the info he gave to our customer.
Could anybody state their opinion regarding this matter? I already told him what our diamond exeprts had to say about it but hes not convinced. I thought if I can show him opinions of independent people who are not in any way involved with our business he will change his mind about a statement by the "gemologist".
thank you in advance


Sep 3, 2000
For a fee, of course, an opinion from independent gemologist appraisers who participate here would be available. You can take your pick from lots of qualified assistance. Every one of us would want to see the ring and understand the circumstances. Was it worn next to another ring? is a basic question. There are several more that need to be asked and answered. You might want to have an appraiser with some experience with making jewelry as well as one familiar with diamonds.


Jul 21, 2004

You’re in a nasty bind. I can’t address the cause of damage to the ring without seeing it but I can certainly address your situation. I’ve been an expert witness in cases like this more than once.

1) Read your warranty and terms of sale. Make sure you understand what it says. If you don’t have one in writing, this is God’s way of telling you that it’s time to write one. Immediately would be a good schedule. Replace the 3 stones with a smile and consider yourself lucky to have gotten out so cheaply. This could have been WAY worse. If you’ve got a policy and this is covered then you know what to do.

2) This leaves us where you’ve got a warranty policy and this doesn’t fall under it, presumably because of an exclusion for customer abuse. If this gemologist won’t put their opinion in writing, explain to the customer that you need a damage report from someone who will. Preferably someone with some qualifications for the job and someone who isn’t one of your competitors. There are several who are participants here. Have the customer pick, so that it doesn’t look like you are sending them to one of your friends but it absolutely must be in writing and signed. Even agree to reimburse the appraisers fee and the needed shipping costs if it turns out that you’re wrong. If the ‘gemologist’ does put it in writing, and they are suitable as an expert (independence, qualifications for the job, etc.) pay for the damages. If they put it in writing and they are unqualified, request a different expert and give a specific explanation for why their chosen one is unacceptable. Give them some direction on how to find a better one. They pick, you pay.

3) If the ring is determined by the independent expert to be defective, replace, repair or refund with a smile and apology, even if you think the expert is dead wrong. Write it off to good PR if nothing else. Your case is lost at this point. If it’s determined to be customer caused, offer to fix it for a reasonable price and discuss the topics of appropriate wear.
This quite possibly would be a covered loss under most consumer insurance policies by the way.

Neil Beaty
Professional Appraisals in Denver


Nov 29, 2006
I gaurantee my work from any stone loss for 2 years under normal wear conditions.
All goods are checked several times and none leave unless i am 110% they are in excellent condition.
If some goon came back with a story like that to me, i can rest assured that it was their own fault and hope they have insurance to cover the ring.

Nothing smashes or cracks on it`s own for no reason.Bit obvious they had some accident and want to get some replacement since they never bothered with insurance and it`s fairly new.
You can`t go fixing it at your own or companys expense.


Nov 14, 2006
Your customer is obviously not being very honest with you, something happened to the ring and now they are expecting you to fix it for free. If I were in your position (and I have been) I''d just replace the 3 stones and tell them to be more careful with the ring next time. There''s not much you can do in these cases except factor it into the cost of doing business and try to make up the losses with good service and hopefully future sales.

If it''s not your policy to warranty these items after 30 days or to exclude warranty repairs in cases of abuse I''d point out to them this is an obvious case of abuse and that you won''t be liable for any future damages. Maybe even get them to sign a waiver to those terms before picking up the ring if you don''t want to be liable for it in the future.

Just my 2c :)
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