Gemstones are vital to the allure and value of many types of jewellery. But as much-loved items age and wear, stones such as diamonds, sapphires and emeralds can drop out and become lost, ruining both the look and value of a piece.
But can you claim on your home insurance if a valuable stone fell out of your necklace, ring or bracelet? And if you so, will you get an exact replacement? Or will it be a second-rate alternative?
‘Accidental damage’ cover is crucial
Most policies won’t cover you for losing or damaging a precious stone, unless the policy includes what’s known as ‘accidental damage’. Accidental damage usually only comes as standard with more expensive policies, but insurers will often add it on only for a few pounds more a month.
However, not all policies which include such cover may be appropriate, especially if you have very valuable gems embedded in your jewellery.
If you’ve had a piece of jewellery ruined by a precious stone falling out, you’ll no doubt want to try and replace it with exactly the same type and quality. And if the stone can’t be fitted back in properly, get a like-for-like replacement for the whole piece.
When looking for the right cover, you should be wary of policy claim limits, clauses regarding restrictive claim circumstances and the rules regarding replacements.
Here are the key elements you need to consider:
Jewellery which includes precious gems can be extremely valuable. You should check both the individual and total item claim limits for your policy and compare them to the claim limits to make sure you’re not under-insuring your jewellery.
You need to tell your insurer about any valuable items of jewellery you own. If you don’t, they might not pay for any replacement stones or whole items.
Ideally, you want a policy which guarantees that it will replace a stone and item of jewellery with exactly the same kind and quality. This can be especially important if you own high-end brand jewellery such as Tiffany or Cartier.
Jewellery that includes gemstones is essentially a matching set as if it loses either the stone, or material surrounding the stone, it wouldn’t be the same. Look for insurance which allows claims for matching sets and what the restrictions are.
Most insurers will first attempt to restore the item to its former glory, but this may be only to a ‘satisfactory’ level. Look for policies which offer to return the item to ‘exactly’ as it was, otherwise the jewellery piece might not be as you would like it.
Finding a jeweller
Many insurers insist that you use a jeweller of their choice, which you may be happy with. But some policies allow you to use your own trusted or recommended jeweller, which would be preferable for many.
Ask the insurer, or your broker
If you’re in doubt, and can’t seem to find the information you need in the terms and conditions, your insurer or broker will be able to check for you and confirm it in writing. If they can’t, go for a different policy with a provider that can so you’re sure your jewellery needs are met.
Compare quotes from our range of handpicked insurers and tailor a policy to suit you. For more information, you can call our experts on 0330 0600 600 or visit www.policyexpert.co.uk/contact for more ways to reach us.
Published 3 December 2013