Appraising and getting trained regretfully is not as easy as just
getting a Graduate Gemologist diploma from GIA. It is a four fold
resposibility. You need training or a competent understanding of
Gemology, Jewelry manufacturing, Valuation principles and throw in a
little legal understanding.
Some organizations that offer appraisal training aRe: ASA (American
Society of Appraisers) www.apraisers.org ISA ( International Society
of Appraisers) www.isa-appraisers.org NAJA (National Association of
Jewelry Appraisers) www.?
These organizations cover the appraisal qualifications of the US so
internationally you would have to research you local appraisal
requirements. These organizations comply with USPAP (Uniform
Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice) and They also comply
with laws and requirements of the UCC (Uniform Comercial Code)
though there may be differences between state and federal code
within the UCC in your location.
USPAP is a document put out by the Appraisal Foundation
(www.appraisalfoundation.org) and is a guide for appraisal
proceedures and behavior. The appraisal foundation is authorized by
Congress as the sourse of Appraisal standards and appraiser
In the US real estate appraisers are the only appraisal discipline
required to be licensed and tested. Personaly property appraisers
(i.e. gems, jewelry and watches) may not have to be licensed but
still are affected by the FTC (Fedreal Trade Comission) UCC laws and
Guidlines. So membership in a reliable appraisal organization and
more importantly training in appraising as well as your discipline
(gems and jewelry) contribute greatly to keeping you from
liabilities that you probably didn’t know existed until you have to
go to court. And if you think that just by printing “I am not
responsible for anything writen in this appraisal” protects you, you
had better read the UCC or ask a lawyer because you can claim many
things, but laws and regulations have a way of finding false claims
or unprofessional bahavior.
Now that’s a mouthful.
It may sound as if I am trying totalk people out of doing appraisals
and in a way I am. There are too many hack appraisers out there
that feel they can do it because they are a gemologist and have been
in the jewelry trade for 20, 30 or 40 years or “I have never had any
problems with my appraisal before” or “the insurance companies have
no problem accepting my appraisals”. Th reality is that an
insurance problem may not occure unless a valuable item is lost, a
questionable appraisal is used to process the claim, and the claim
is denied due to that questionable appraisal. The client may choose
to sue the appraiser. Another reality is that inflated appraisals
are often used as sales tools. This give the consumer a false sense
of value (i.e you paid $2000, but it’s really worth $4500. All this
does is drive up insurance premiums and possibly falsly justify a
"deal" that probably wasn’t a deal at all.
Welcome to my world.
Arthur Anton Skuratowicz NJA GJG (GIA)
Anton Nash LLC