Post # 1
I was given a surprise post-elopement bridal shower yesterday (wooohoo!!!!!) and saw a dear friend from many years ago.
She has been married for 18 years and still wears her beautiful three stone Engagement Ring with a .75 princess cut center stone. But she told me a shocking story that I wanted to share here. A couple of years ago she took her ring to a jeweler to have it rhodium plated and to have the prongs re-built and strengthened. Two weeks after the work was done, she was at home doing laundry and noticed the center stone had fallen out! She and her Darling Husband turned the house upside down but they never found the stone.
Here is the kicker. She said she went back to the jewelers and showed them what had happened, and they basically said “too bad, so sad.” They didn’t offer any kind of compensation whatsoever; they didn’t even refund the cost of the work on the prongs.
My friend ended up replacing the center stone but she doesn’t like it as much, and she says it isn’t as sparkly as the original stone. She didn’t pursue it any further with the jeweler.
What would you have done in this situation? I would have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and maybe gone so far as to contact a lawyer.
I’m just curious to know the Bees’ opinions on this. Have you ever heard of something like this happening? Do reputable jewelers guarantee this type of work or not — in case of the loss of a stone, I mean? How can you make sure something like this doesn’t happen in the future?
Post # 3
I would contact the BBB as well, but I don’t know what jewelers usually guarantee with their work. I guess out would’ve been good to ask beforehand.
Post # 4
@Andr0meda: Wow… that sucks! Personally, I don’t get angry often, but when you try to screw me out of something that is that expensive and rightfully mine, I WILL GET MY WAY! That being said, please don’t yell or get angry with clerks because they are just the frontline (I say that as having been a retail clerk. We can’t help you in any bigger way! I swear!).
First I would have talked to the manager and demanded a full refund and a replacement stone of equal quality (based on my appraisal), since it was their shoddy workmanship that caused the stones to fall out. If the manager said no or offered me some crap, I would have demanded the number of the owner/president/customer service line. If you get a call centre, continue demanding to speak to a higher up until your work is done. “Clearly you are unable to help me with this problem. I think it is time I speak to your boss so that this situation can be resolved”. If none of these things worked, I would have filed a complaint with the BBB and then talked to my insurance agent about whether or not the centre stone qualified for replacement since it was the prongs that were the issue, not my own carelessness.
After all of that, my ring is guarenteed through the place it was purchased and insured. If the stones fall out as a result of the setting (not my own fault), the store will replace everything for free. The only condition is that I get my ring inspected every 6 months at the store, which is fine with me! Good reason for a cleaning and a check to make sure every stone is tight.
Having heard about people who have had stones fall out, about once a week I touch the stones to see if they are wiggly or not. If they move, then I will go get a prong tightened.
Post # 5
I would have definitely gone as high up in the chain as I could have gone and if no efforts were made at reparations, I probably would have contacted a neutral 3rd party and/or a lawyer. I am not a jeweler so I would have consulted someone in a completely different area to make sure that I was in the right. I’m pretty sure that if a lawyer was contacted, the business would settle with me as a .75 ct stone is going to be cheaper than dealing with small claims court.
Post # 6
This was a small independent jeweler, not a chain. I don’t want to say it was a mom and pop jeweler; it’s in a small town though and had a good reputation and had been in business a while.
I would have absolutely raised the roof if I’d been in her shoes. I definitely would have taken it to small claims court, just for the principle.
I think part of the reason she didn’t pursue it was because of her life circumstances at the time. She was going back to school for her master’s while working full time as a teacher, and also being a mom to three kids at home. She had a lot on her plate at the time.
Post # 7
@Andr0meda: My aunt had a similar situation occur with Helzberg Jewelers. She had been going to them for almost seven years for maintainence and repairs on her ring. Her final trip in they completely rebuilt the head and prong area as they deemed the old one damaged. Three days later she looked down and realized the entire head had just dissapeared, diamond and all.
When she went into Helzberg to demand action they didn’t stand behind their work or their warranty and basically blew her off. They claimed her hand had been “smashed” as this was the only way the entire head would fall off. She showed them her hand and noted the date two days prior in picking up the ring and yet they ignored the obvious that her hand was fine without any injury. The rest of the ring was completely damage free.
She is screwed at this point and is without her e-ring after 27 years of marriage. They are trying to save up to have it fixed.
Post # 8
I would come unglued. If I’m paying for your quality work and expertise, you better be standing behind it. I’d for sure report to the BBB and probably even a civil action if the ring/stone was worth the time and effort.