GIA vs Insurance Appraisal

When selling your jewelry in the secondary market, a different market than the retail market, it is very important to understand the differences between the types of evaluations your items can go through beforehand.

Diamond Buying Expert
An insurance appraisal and a Gemological Institute of America laboratory report are two completely different documents. An insurance appraisal may use a GIA report as a point of reference. The insurance appraisal is for your protection in case of a loss. It is a matter of opinion. The GIA report is the most reliable source of establishing what you have. It is considered a fact.

Established in 1931, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) is the world’s foremost authority on diamonds, colored stones, and pearls. Noteworthy, it’s for public benefit, and a nonprofit institute. The GIA is the leading source of knowledge, standards, and education in gems and jewelry. Also, it’s important to remember that the GIA does not put a dollar value on your item, whereas an insurance appraiser does.

Some benefits of getting your diamonds certified with the GIA:

  • Diamonds are evaluated by more than one person.
  • There are specialized machines to determine angles, proportions, etc. that appraisers don’t necessarily use in their evaluation.
  • Jewelry professionals all over the world rely on the GIA’s evaluation that is stated in their report.

We recommend that our potential clients use GIA reports over a certified appraiser who is a graduate gemologist from the GIA because:

  • Appraisals are one person’s opinion on what they think the gem quality is and what the value might be.
  • An insurance appraisal doesn’t reflect what an item will bring in the secondary market, where a professional jewelry buyer will write a check.
  • Insurance companies love high appraisals because you pay a premium based on a figure that they set for its replacement value which in no way reflects what a jewelry professional would pay.

In conclusion, if you had a GIA report in the jewelry trade, you could call someone from far away and give them the GIA number and then proceed with selling the item. In addition, with an appraisal you wouldn’t know how to determine what’s fact or fiction. GIA is the platinum standard for diamond evaluation so you can rest assured that the information is correct.


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