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Ring Arrived! Simple Jewelry Insurance Questions

PCMusicGuy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 29, 2011
Messages
26
My ring has finally arrived from GOG! (Before you ask, pictures will be posted later this week. :bigsmile:)

I'm looking around at insurance options but there does not seem to be any detailed information comparing the options. I've used Jeweler's Mutual (JM) in the past and never had to make any claims. I'm also considering a stand alone policy through my State Farm agent, and I've also heard about Chubbs but don't know much about them. I have a few questions but I'll keep it as short and simple as possible.

1. Yes, I know this is a stupid question and I already know the answer, but do any insurance companies insure based upon something other than money, say intrinsic value or quality? They always say the replacement stone will be of at least equal value. I think most here would agree that "equal value" cannot be determined by the 4 C's alone. An important factor is a certain quality of light performance of which there is no standard metric to gauge value, at least not in fancy cuts.

I spent months searching for the right princess stone and it saw at least $1800 of price increases to the stone I eventually picked. So if the stone I buy today at $15,000 gets lost 6 to 7 years down the road, an equivalent stone (on all merits) may cost $30,000. Insurance would not cover everything since appraised values are usually 1.5x purchase price. This is just one example of a completely realistic scenario in which you'd be SOL. I don't want equal value, I want an equal stone! I guess looking on the bright side with this example, you would only have to pay the same price for the same stone years later instead of double the price.

As a side note, the personal article policy with State Farm has the insured value increase with economic inflation. It would be great if it grew with diamond prices as well, but its a start at least.


2. When I spoke to JM, they said I would have full control and final say in all jewelry decisions and that only I would work directly with the jeweler during the replacement process. They would stay out of it and basically just pay the ending bill up to the insured value. I've heard contradicting stories on this forum about experiences with JM. If their written policy is somewhat vague on the details, is there any way I can get them to agree to their verbal confirmation in writing? Would an email chain be good enough for written proof?


3. Is it possible to appraise a ring and stone without removing it from the box? (i.e. not touching it). The reason I ask, is State Farm is asking for a separate appraisal than the one provided by GOG. They will only insure 125% of the purchase price (which is unacceptable) and to ensure on appraised value, they would need to consider it an heirloom and have two appraisals taking the lower of the two. The ring is brand new, just came in, and frankly, I want the first time it is removed from the box to be by me when I take a knee.

Thanks in advance.
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
PCMusicGuy|1312902310|2987194 said:
My ring has finally arrived from GOG! (Before you ask, pictures will be posted later this week. :bigsmile:)

I'm looking around at insurance options but there does not seem to be any detailed information comparing the options. I've used Jeweler's Mutual (JM) in the past and never had to make any claims. I'm also considering a stand alone policy through my State Farm agent, and I've also heard about Chubbs but don't know much about them. I have a few questions but I'll keep it as short and simple as possible.

1. Yes, I know this is a stupid question and I already know the answer, but do any insurance companies insure based upon something other than money, say intrinsic value or quality? They always say the replacement stone will be of at least equal value. I think most here would agree that "equal value" cannot be determined by the 4 C's alone. An important factor is a certain quality of light performance of which there is no standard metric to gauge value, at least not in fancy cuts.

Is it an AGS0 or branded stone? If so then you might be able to replace with whatever brand it is if this is stated on the appraisal. If it is not an AGS0 then I would recommend including ASET pics with your appraisal (actually this is a good idea ANYWAY)

I spent months searching for the right princess stone and it saw at least $1800 of price increases to the stone I eventually picked. So if the stone I buy today at $15,000 gets lost 6 to 7 years down the road, an equivalent stone (on all merits) may cost $30,000. Insurance would not cover everything since appraised values are usually 1.5x purchase price. This is just one example of a completely realistic scenario in which you'd be SOL. I don't want equal value, I want an equal stone! I guess looking on the bright side with this example, you would only have to pay the same price for the same stone years later instead of double the price.

As a side note, the personal article policy with State Farm has the insured value increase with economic inflation. It would be great if it grew with diamond prices as well, but its a start at least.

You would want to update your appraisal periodically to reflect increases in diamond prices.



2. When I spoke to JM, they said I would have full control and final say in all jewelry decisions and that only I would work directly with the jeweler during the replacement process. They would stay out of it and basically just pay the ending bill up to the insured value. I've heard contradicting stories on this forum about experiences with JM. If their written policy is somewhat vague on the details, is there any way I can get them to agree to their verbal confirmation in writing? Would an email chain be good enough for written proof?

I am not sure...

3. Is it possible to appraise a ring and stone without removing it from the box? (i.e. not touching it). The reason I ask, is State Farm is asking for a separate appraisal than the one provided by GOG. They will only insure 125% of the purchase price (which is unacceptable) and to ensure on appraised value, they would need to consider it an heirloom and have two appraisals taking the lower of the two. The ring is brand new, just came in, and frankly, I want the first time it is removed from the box to be by me when I take a knee.

no...can you just insure 125% of purchase price and update later, after you propose? definitely cannot appraise without touching the ring

Thanks in advance.
 

denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
8,817
1. Yes, I know this is a stupid question and I already know the answer, but do any insurance companies insure based upon something other than money, say intrinsic value or quality? They always say the replacement stone will be of at least equal value. I think most here would agree that "equal value" cannot be determined by the 4 C's alone. An important factor is a certain quality of light performance of which there is no standard metric to gauge value, at least not in fancy cuts.

They pretty much all do it based on quality, not money. That is to say, they are agreeing to replace the item with another of ‘like kind and quality’ in the case of a loss and as long as this is below the face value of the policy then all is good. The tricky part is defining what is ‘like kind and quality’ to both your and their satisfaction. That’s where a highly detailed appraisal will help. Cutting is one of the 4 C’s but there are plenty of other attributes, like manufacturer, lab chosen for grading, designer, ASET patterning and basically anything else you want to be considered as part of the replacement. You are setting the minimum standards that they must exceed at replacement time.


2. When I spoke to JM, they said I would have full control and final say in all jewelry decisions and that only I would work directly with the jeweler during the replacement process. They would stay out of it and basically just pay the ending bill up to the insured value. I've heard contradicting stories on this forum about experiences with JM. If their written policy is somewhat vague on the details, is there any way I can get them to agree to their verbal confirmation in writing? Would an email chain be good enough for written proof?

Get everything in writing, from JM or anyone else. Verbal confirmation counts for NOTHING. It’s not entirely correct when they say they stay out of it. You pick a jeweler, they send them the description from the appraisal and get a bid to replace. If they feel that the jewelers bid is unreasonable for whatever reason, they complain. In their defense, they’re pretty fair to jewelers but they can and do estimate what they think is a ‘fair’ price to pay and stick to that, independent of the face value of the policy unless they can be persuaded that this particular item is worth more than they expected for whatever reason.

3. Is it possible to appraise a ring and stone without removing it from the box? (i.e. not touching it). The reason I ask, is State Farm is asking for a separate appraisal than the one provided by GOG. They will only insure 125% of the purchase price (which is unacceptable) and to ensure on appraised value, they would need to consider it an heirloom and have two appraisals taking the lower of the two. The ring is brand new, just came in, and frankly, I want the first time it is removed from the box to be by me when I take a knee.

That’s a new one for me. No, it’s not possible to do a competent inspection with the ring in the box and an appraisal based on an incompetent inspection is doing you no good. A competent appraiser will clean all fingerprints and such off of the piece before they put it back in the box and there should be no trace that they’ve touched it.
I’ve never heard of the rule of getting 2 appraisals and taking the lowest value and I work with State Farm agents a LOT. Maybe it’s different in your state but this seems like a very strange requirement. Double check with your agent about this. Something seems off.
 

PCMusicGuy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 29, 2011
Messages
26
Thanks for the feedback guys.

1. It never even occurred to me that I could update the appraisal after the policy is written. GOG provided a nice appraisal package with ASET, Sarin, etc. so it is a no brainer really. I will keep that in mind.

2. I will call JM and speak with them again. It seems as though they talk up how the process really works to make it sound great, but on paper it is more restrictive and less glamorous. No matter, I will likely be using these guys for insurance.

3. I didn't think you could do a real appraisal without touching the ring. State Farm Underwriters are crap in Texas. They will only do up to 125% of the purchase price (you must provide some kind of receipt or invoice.) I thought it was stupid as well as next door in Louisiana, all they need is the appraisal. I've already complained to my agent here about the Underwriter policies and told them it was costing them business.
 
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