Jewellery Insurance

If your Jewellery was stolen today, would your Insurance company pay you enough to replace it… Are you sure?

Thinking about Insurance is something we often like to put in the ‘too hard basket’.  It’s more a case of taking out a general insurance policy and hope that if the worst eventuates, we’re fully covered.

We’ve had a couple of cases recently where customers thought they had good insurance cover for their Jewellery, but didn’t, so we decided it was timely to remind people on how you can avoid the pitfalls of jewellery insurance.

Insurance Policy
The 2 things to check on your Insurance policy for claims are:

  • What is the item specification level – at what item value do you have to specify your jewellery items individually on your policy.

    Consider this:  If your specification level is $2000 and you have a ring worth $5000 stolen, the insurance company may pay you $2000 if the item was not specified on the policy or pay you $5000 if the item was specified.

  • What is the total claim limit – if you lost all your jewellery, what is the maximum amount your insurance company would pay out.  Does this figure accurately cover the cost of replacing all your jewellery?

Once you know these figures you can adjust your policy according to your needs.

Documenting your Jewellery

If you lost your jewellery today – could you write down a list of what you had, its size, weight, stone details and value?  If the Police find your jewellery, how will you prove it’s yours?

Very few of us can.  It’s a good idea to lay your jewellery out on a flat surface and take photos of each item.  Some items you may want to take images from different angles to give a true likeness.  At the same time write down each item and record the metal (You may need to use a magnifying glass to see metal stamps), weight and size of each piece.  Attach any extra information about each item you may have eg Purchase certificate, receipts, previous valuations.  Save this information in one file in the cloud or print it all off and store in a safe place.  You may want to provide your insurance company with a copy.

This might sound like a lot of work but believe me it’s easier to do it now than when it’s disappeared.


Because you’ve checked your insurance policy, you’ll know that some of your jewellery may need to be specified on your policy.  If you’ve had the piece for a while, it’s a good idea to have it assessed to find out its current replacement value to document with your insurance company.  Similarly if your current valuations or specified Jewellery items haven't been updated in the last 3 years, it's important to have these reviewed.

Valuing for insurance for unique pieces shouldn’t be done by just anyone.  Valuing is a skilled trade, just like building or electrical work is.  Standard items like gold chain or items that you purchased from your favourite Jeweller can usually be valued by the Jeweller as they can get the latest prices for those items from their suppliers.  Jewellery items that are handmade or made with several components, eg gold and gemstones should always be valued by a certified gemologist.

How Showcase Jewellers Te Awamutu Processes Valuations

The first thing we do when you drop an item into our store for valuation is provide you with a receipt of the item, denoting the item's description and what work is to be undertaken eg Valuation.

It’s a good idea to provide copies of any old valuations or purchase certificates as it provides an authenticating comparison for the valuer to work with.  Gradings are subjective and stone measurements in settings are calculated using industry formulas as opposed to actual measurements provided in purchase certificates that were documented when the gemstones were unset.

Next your item is moved to our Jewellery department where each piece of Jewellery is photographed and documented in our computer programme.  Your Jewellery then goes to our Te Awamutu workshop for our Jeweller Richard to clean and check each item so it is in the best condition for valuation.  You will be advised of any recommended repairs at this stage and it’s best to have this work completed before valuation.  As a Jeweller, Richard can estimate the value of an item, so this is where knowing your specification level can save you money as if the estimate is well below your specification level, then you’re probably safe to forgo the expense of a full valuation.

Once clean, your Jewellery is then couriered via insured courier to our Registered Gemmologist.  During valuation the Gemmologist will use various tests to discern the metals and gemstones used in the item of jewellery.  A full dated report, detailing the item with photos, gemstone grading, measurements, weights and the value of the current $US (gold and gemstone pricing is based on $US) will be provided back to you.  It is a good idea to provide your insurance company with a copy of this report.

After Loss Valuations

If the worst happens and you’ve lost or had your Jewellery stolen, talk to your insurance company and ask them for a claim number.  They may insist on having your claim assessed by their own advisors.  This is fine, but it pays for you to have your independent Jeweller do an After Loss Valuation too.  There is usually no cost to you and you’d be surprised how often our store has been able to negotiate a fairer result for our customers.

If you have any questions about Jewellery Insurance, have a chat to one of our team when you’re next in store, we’re happy to help.