A small boutique jeweller in Surrey has lost a £30,000 court case in which a man sued after his ex-partner lost a diamond bought from the retailer.
Mark Hare gifted Olivia Claffey a £29,000 yellow diamond from Philip Lloyd Jewellers in Reigate, Surrey, for Christmas in 2017.
They later returned to the store and bought a gold ring in which the diamond was set.
After only wearing the ring on very few occasions, according to Claffey who gave evidence for her former partner Hare, the diamond fell out of its setting at Victoria Station, prompting a four-hour search to no avail.
Philip Lloyd Jewellers argued in court that Claffey had not worn the ring with the proper care, and that the damage was her own fault.
However, the judge decreed that the claw of the ring in which the stone was set was likely not of sufficient quality, awarding Hare £29,000 plus inflation.
Abby Easterbrook, director of Philip Lloyd Jewellers, commenting on the outcome, told Professional Jeweller: “It’s disappointing to say the least, and disheartening that the judgement was made in favour of the claimant. The whole court case just seems so wrong.”
Easterbrook also expressed her opinion that the claimant’s superior legal team likely played a significant factor in the judge’s ruling.
She added that the jeweller had reason to believe Claffey “had previously been hard on her jewellery”, saying it had personally conducted “a variety of repairs and re-polishing jobs for her”.
In the hope that other jewellers could avoid the same pitfalls in future, Easterbrook added in conclusion: “Our terms and conditions were displayed clearly on our wall, but apparently needed to be on all paperwork and be drawn to the attention of the customer on purchase. That would be good to point out for all of the jewellery trade going forward.”
Read more about the lawsuit below: