Jeweler charging customer for damage it caused

Dear Consumer Ed:

I recently took my fiancée’s engagement ring to a jeweler to get it re-sized.  A week later I got a call from the jeweler saying that one of the diamond baguettes had broken, and that I would need to pay $480 in cash to get the ring back. What can I do to make the jeweler fix the damage they caused?

Consumer Ed says:

If the jeweler caused the damage, then it is the jeweler’s responsibility to fix it. The repair may not even cost them much, if anything, if they have liability insurance that includes protection for workmanship errors.

If the damage was not the fault of the jeweler, they are not obligated to repair it if they haven’t received payment from you. However, you have the right to consent to any repairs and the associated costs before any repairs are made. 

If you suspect that the jeweler is misrepresenting the need for the repair or the cost, you may file a complaint with the Georgia Department of Law’s Consumer Protection Division by calling (404) 651-8600 or by visiting consumer.ga.gov.

You can also file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau (bbb.org).  As a last resort, you may need to consult with a private attorney and file a private cause of action. To do so, you will need to provide some sort of proof that the jeweler actually caused the damage to the ring.

Submit your own question to Consumer Ed.  Remember…we do not give legal advice. Always consult a lawyer about legal issues.