What is specialized jewelry insurance?

Jewelry insurance for the most part, is and should be viewed as it’s own “thing”. For example, you should definitely NOT rely on your homeowners or renters insurance to cover your jewelry. This is for a variety of reasons. But the key reason is, these insurances typically only cover jewelry up to $1,000-$2,000 — and that’s usually with a deductible to boot. You want coverage that is specific to jewelry and offered by a company that specializes in that protection.

Even adding a “jewelry rider” or other similarly named addendum to an existing homeowners or renters policy isn’t optimal. These riders do not usually cover as many loss, disappearance, or damage situations. And a claim on these riders, will likely impact your entire policy’s premium. Check out our blog articles: “Will my renters insurance cover my jewelry?” or “Will my homeowners insurance cover my jewelry?“, for more specifics.

But generally speaking, jewelry coverage, should only cover jewelry. It can cover multiple pieces of jewelry, but it shouldn’t cover any other asset type.

Who are the major players in jewelry insurance?

When searching for jewelry insurance online, the companies below are the ones you are likely to see. Keep in mind, your major P&C companies like Geico, Allstate, Nationwide, State Farm, etc., will probably show up in Google searches, but this if for their jewelry riders. And remember, these are different types of insurance that are tacked on to existing policies.

This list seems fairly straightforward now, but let’s take a deeper dive into the complexities of the jewelry insurance space. And this is not unique to jewelry insurers, so we’re not saying this is “bad”. We just understand if you are confused.

Deep dive into jewelry insurance companies

Despite the complexity of the jewelry insurance industry, the insured rarely even knows
CompanyHow you would insure through them?Who administers their policies?Who issues/underwrites their policies?Year StartedLocationGeneral Notes
Brite.CoOnline/Direct through them.
Some retail jeweler partners
Brite.CoGlencar Insurance Co2019Evanston, ILTheir website and background gives the the air of “modern yet stable”. Definitely a new player that’s making big distribution moves.
Chubb InsuranceThrough an agent or broker that sells themChubbChubb1882/1985 (kind of) Their history includes companies they acquired that started earlier than “Chubb”. Also ACE, which acquired Chubb, and then took on the name, didn’t start until 1985.Warren, NJGives the air of insuring high-dollar assets and the business comes to them. Versus Wax, who underwrites through them but seems more modern and advertising/marketing heavy
GemshieldOnline, or through a Wexler Insurance agent (unless they’ve already rebranded as Jewelers MutualWexler Insurance Agency which was purchased by Jewelers Mutual in 2020Starnet (can’t find a site for this company), but it is owned by Berkley insurance. And this Berkley Insurance is the parent company of Berkley Asset Protection which underwrites Lavalier.1997 (link is from GlassDoor which may require you to login)Cincinnati, OHDespite them having the best online quote tool, this is by far the most complex operations to unravel. This site seems to act as lead/quote generation for Wexler/Jeweler’s Mutual. BUT, they are underwritten by a subsidiary of the same company that underwrites Lavalier.
Jewelers MutualDirect/Online or
through an agent or broker that sells them
Jewelers MutualJewelers Mutual1913Neenah, WISeems the most straightforward and accessible in terms of purchasing opportunities. Very active in marketing/advertising for a company with such long history. Kind of presents as a mixture of old and secure, but willing to modernize where needed.
JIBNAYou can only purchase through an agent or broker. They have a form on their site to find one in your areaJIBNA?JIBNA?2007Louisville, KYSince they typically only deal with agents, their website looks like it’s from the 90’s. It seems very B-2-B in it’s approach.
LavalierOnline/Direct, and through agents/brokers. They have a relationship specifically with Progressive as their jewelry insurer of referralLavalierBerkley Asset Protection. This appears to be a subsidiary of Berkley insurance which also ultimately underwrites Gemshield2013New York, NYSeems to have a well-maintained and designed site. Berkley Asset Protection seems focus on protecting jewelry for individuals and retailers. They also offer fine art insurance, business insurance and workers comp
WAXOnlineWAXChubb – the same company listed above2018New York, NYVery active in the digital marketing. Their ads were likely only second to Jeweler’s Mutual. They appear to focus more on collectibles insurance over jewelry insurance
ZillionOnly through (~450) select retail jewelers (as of 1/18/2022)ZillionZillion2018Palo Alto, CaliforniaAlso appear to refer to themselves as myZillion. All other companies acknowledge the underlying administers and underwriters of their policies if they have them, and since Zillion doesn’t, it seems they do it. Because they can only be used if you buy at their partnered jewelers, it’s harder to find out as much about their policy.

Does this complexity mean jewelry insurance is “sketchy” or not worth it?

No, not at all. These type of back office hand offs are common across all insurance types. There are a variety of reasons these relationships arise, and here are just a few:

  1. The insurance company face (the one you interact with), does not want to maintain the extremely costly risk coverage
  2. The underwriter is established, but doesn’t want to venture into branding, marketing or direct customer acquisition/service
  3. Acquisitions. After an acquisition, some companies absorb the name, or let the acquired company run as its own entity. They don’t want to waste the brand recognition of the company they just bought.

Regardless of the reasoning, by purchasing through any of these companies, you can rest assured that your jewelry is properly insured. You likely wouldn’t even know you were interacting with multiple companies unless you paid attention to the names on the policy, or looked at the bottom of the companies’ websites.

As long as your annual premium is ~1%-3% of the jewelry value, your jewelry is covered from loss, disappearance, and theft, then your within the ballpark of what any of these companies would offer

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