The Jewellers Block insurance policy was originally developed at Lloyd's of London in the late 1880's by a diamond merchant's clerk named Thomas March. Mr. March, who was concerned at the inability of his employer to obtain insurance against theft, was friendly with one of the leading Lloyd's Underwriters of the day and between them they devised the first Jewellers Block policy. Soon after, a London insurance brokerage bearing Mr. March’s name was established and flourishes to this day as one of the leading Jewellers Block specialist brokers.
What does "Block" Mean?
No one remembers how the name came about, but it is most probably inspired by the 19th century French term “en bloc”, meaning “all in one”.
What Coverage is Provided?
The Jewellers Block Policy is an "all risk" coverage, which means that the insurer must specify what is not covered. If a risk is not in the list of exclusions, it is covered. Typical risks that are covered are Burglary, Robbery, Shoplifting, Grab and Run, Trick Loss, Substitution and Accidental Damage, in addition to the usual risks such as Fire.
What Extensions are Available?
Coverage is based on stock at your premises but may be extended to follow your stock almost wherever it goes, including:
Jobbers And Outworkers
Memo Of Consignment To Other Jewelers
Bank Or Safety Deposit Boxes
Commissioned Sales Representatives
Travel By Principals Or Employees
Trade Shows And Exhibitions
While Being Worn
What are the Requirements?
A burglary resistant safe or vault suitable for the value of stock. Your broker will be pleased to advise you on a suitable safe or vault
A burglar alarm connected by a direct line to the alarm company's monitoring station. Ideally the alarm would be certified by Underwriters Laboratories as Extent 2 Premises Protection with Level A3 Line Security or better. The alarm should be certified and include at least one hold up button and a door contact on the safe. These are standard requirements and insurers may have further requirements. If you are located in an area where ULC certification is not available, a specification schedule from your alarm company may be acceptable.
Unless the value of jewellery at your business is very low, insurers will expect you to have a multi-camera digital video recording system. Your broker can advise you on this.
Good security outside normal business hours is vital. Typically, only a small amount of jewellery and watches may be left outside your safes or vaults when the business is closed or unattended.
Good record keeping is essential. You must maintain an updated record of all purchases and sales, and you must carry out a physical inventory of all your own stock at least once a year. How you keep your records is up to you, but a modern computer-based inventory system has many advantages and is our strong recommendation.
The above gives you a general view of what the Jewellers Block Policy has to offer and how it operates. When considering which quotation to accept, you should check your quotation carefully and compare how different insurers handle the conditions and warranties. The experience of your insurance broker in the field is also critical. Brokers must be prepared to explain conditions to you and knowledgeable enough to deal with disputed claim situations. A good test is to ask your broker what "memo" means; if they do not know - go elsewhere.
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