My mother bought a big ruby faceted stone from Yangon in Myanmar last year. The stone was at least 3 over carats and the dealer told her that it was a Mogok Ruby. She paid a very high price for it.
She sent to a jeweler for setting, whom we know very well. The ring was set together with diamonds surrounding it.
My mother was quite happy with the setting. I looked at the ring with a loupe and found out that there was a small chip in one of the facets. I have seen the stone before it was sent for setting and there was no chip on the table.
We sent it back to the jeweler and argued with him that he had chipped the stone. But the jeweler said that the stone was already chipped when it was sent in. He refused to reimburse us with anything at all.
Now we are not on talking term with the jeweler and my mother said that she will never go back to the jeweler again. What do you think?
Different countries may have different trade practices on jewelry setting, but the universal rule is that the jeweler is not responsible if the gemstone/s is broken or damage, or if there is a nick on the table or any fractures that may appear later after the stone is set as a jewelry.
The jeweler will exercise due care in the setting of the jewelry but accidents may happen that the stone may fracture in the course of setting it into the gold or silver casing. In the event that the stone is fractured, the most the jeweler can offer is that he will not ‘charge’ you for the workmanship or for the work done on the casting and return the ‘broken ’stone to you.
Perhaps the stone may already has a fracture or a nick on the table and during the in-take of the stone at the counter this is not noticeable by the jeweler counter staff.
Another scenario can be the nicks and indents on the stone’s table are being glass-filled. You and the jeweler may not have noticed it before. Hence, when the blow-torch with an initial temperature of more than 700oC hit the stone during setting, the temperature would have melted the glass filling.
You may perhaps claim some money back in terms of workmanship. I do not think that you have any legal recourse against them. During the in-take of the stone the jeweler will have to issue you a receipt to acknowledge that he has accepted your order. At the back of the receipt, all the terms and conditions apply, including that the jeweler is not responsible for any damage/s caused to the stone during setting.
A Arthur Lau