Many people overlook the need to
properly insure their expensive jewelry, believing that it is
automatically covered by their homeowners policy. While homeowners
policies do cover jewelry, this insurance usually is subject to a much
lower limit than the overall contents coverage. This reduced limit is
called a "sublimit," and a typical sublimit is $1,000 for loss by theft
of jewelry, watches, and precious and semiprecious stones. If your
jewelry is worth more than the sublimit in your homeowners policy, you
should consider purchasing specific insurance to cover it. The
following is a good process to follow.
* Arrange an appointment with us
to review your jewelry coverage. Bring as much information about your
jewelry portfolio as possible, including any appraisals.* If your
high-valued jewelry has not been appraised within the last 3 years,
consider obtaining an appraisal from a reputable jeweler. Insurance
companies often require an appraisal on more expensive jewelry from a
graduate of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The Institute's
G.G., G.J., or A.J.P. designations at the end of an individual's name
indicate that the jeweler has achieved a high level of professionalism
with an education backed by a respected nonprofit organization.
Make sure the appraisal has a description of the diamond's four C's
--(a) carat, (b) cut, (c) clarity, and (d) color. The "carat" refers to
the weight of the diamond. The quality of the "cut" of the diamond
results from the way light enters the stone and is reflected back.
"Cut" is also used to refer to the diamond's shape, such as round or
pear-shaped. The "clarity" refers to the prevalence of minor spots,
lines, bubbles, or other natural imperfections within the diamond. The
"color" denotes the tint a diamond may possess. Remember that the
better the appraisal, the fewer problems you will encounter with the
insurer if you ever have to make a claim.