Consumer FAQs for Voluntary Code of Conduct for Authenticating Canadian Diamond Claims
The objective of this Code is to provide a minimum standard for authenticating a Canadian diamond claim. This Code applies only to diamonds marketed as Canadian.
1. I bought a Canadian diamond before the Code came into effect. Is my diamond still a Canadian diamond?
The origin of your stone has not changed. The Voluntary Code of Conduct for Authenticating Canadian Diamond Claims is simply a mechanism, which can provide consumers with additional assurance that the necessary "chain of custody" steps have been taken from mine to retail sale of Canadian diamonds.
You should first contact the retailer to obtain his/her assurance that the diamond is Canadian. All retailers, including non-members of the Code, who are making a claim that a diamond is Canadian should be able to substantiate their claim. The inability to substantiate such a claim could find the claimant in contravention of the Competition Act.
The Canadian Diamond Code Committee (CDCC) may be able to confirm that the diamond is Canadian if it was purchased from a retailer that already had in place the appropriate paper trail allowing to track the diamond from the retailer to the mine. If this is the case, the retailer should have given you an invoice and a report or certificate which provides a diamond description, a diamond identification number, the name and address of the issuer of the report or certificate, the date of purchase and invoice number.
2. Will the Code Committee "guarantee" that my diamond is Canadian?
No. The authentication process simply confirms whether or not the Code has been followed. The Voluntary Code lays out a minimum standard for the handling, storage, packaging and marking of diamonds marketed as Canadian from the point that they are sold by a mining company. Participants, including mining operators, sorting and marketing facilities, traders of rough diamonds, cutters and polishers, traders of polished diamonds, jewellery manufacturers and retailers are required to meet this minimum standard. Upon receiving a request to authenticate a Canadian diamond claim along with the required information and payment of the prescribed fee, the Code Committee will confirm whether or not the necessary steps were taken to meet the required standard.
3. What if the Code Committee cannot authenticate a Canadian diamond representation? What do I do?
If the Code Committee cannot authenticate a Canadian diamond claim, you may want to contact the retailer for further clarification. If you are not satisfied with the representation, you may register a complaint with the Competition Bureau by contacting the toll-free number, 1-800-348-5358, and providing the description of the diamond; i.e. all laser markings (when applicable), Diamond Identification Number, the 4Cs supplied by the retailer, the retailer's name and address, date of purchase and invoice number.
4. Where can I get more information about the Code?
You may call the Code Committee at 1-866-399-1118 or visit its website at www.canadiandiamondcodeofconduct.com
5. Is there a fee for authenticating my Canadian Diamond?
Yes, there is an administrative fee of $25.00 plus GST for up to 2 diamonds per piece of jewellery and $50.00 Plus GST for 3 or more diamonds per piece of jewellery.
6. What should I ask for if I am considering buying a Canadian diamond?
You should obtain assurance from the retailer that the diamond originated from a mine in Canada.
If the retailer is a member of the Voluntary Code of Conduct for Authenticating Canadian Diamond Claims, he/she is committed to provide you, on the sale of a promoted Canadian diamond, details regarding the Canadian Diamond Authentication Process as well as a polished diamond certificate/report and an invoice which contains the following information:
(a) the diamond Identification Number;
(b) the name and address of the retailer where the diamond jewellery was purchased, the retailer's invoice number and the date of the invoice;
(c) the polished diamond description.
If the retailer is not a Code member, he/she must be able to substantiate his/her Canadian diamond claims in order to comply with the Competition Act. If you have doubts regarding a claim from a retailer that a diamond is Canadian, you should try first to obtain assurance from this retailer. If after attempting to obtain clarification, you are of the view that the claim is fraudulent, misleading or that it cannot be substantiated, you may wish to register a complaint with the Competition Bureau by contacting the toll-free number, at 1-800-348-5358.
7. What information do I need to provide to request the authentication of a Canadian diamond (jewellery) I purchased?
You will need:
(a) the diamond Identification Number;
(b) the name and address of the retailer where the diamond jewellery was purchased, the retailer's invoice number and the date of invoice;
(c) the polished diamond description; i.e. shape (cut), colour, clarity and carat (weight).
8. Are there other certification or authentication programs?
There are other diamond programs in existence:
- The Kimberley Process
is an international certification scheme that tightens controls over the trade in rough diamonds and aims to prevent conflict diamonds - rough diamonds that are used by rebel movements to finance wars against legitimate governments - from entering markets. It is a joint international initiative developed by governments, the diamond industry and civil society, that came into force on January 1, 2003. There are currently 48 participants in the Kimberley Process, including the European Community, which has 27 member states.
- The Government of the Northwest Territories has a certification program which certifies certain diamonds as mined, cut and polished in the Northwest Territories.
- The Centre canadien de valorisation du diamant (CCVD) in Matane, Québec also has a certification program for diamonds which were mined, cut and polished in Canada.
- Trade certification programs. There are a number of retailers and manufacturers who certify the characteristics of their own diamonds.
The Code authentication service provided to consumers has a much greater acceptance and support from all levels of the Canadian diamond industry. Our process is national in nature and it is also endorsed by the Canadian Jewellers Association (CJA), the Quebec Jewellers Corporation (CBQ) and Jewellers Vigilance Canada (JVC). It provides an authentication service which will verify that the minimum standards have been met at each step of the pipeline, that route that diamonds follow from the mine to the consumer.
9. Does having my diamond registered with any company or web site mean that it is appraised and insured?
No, having your diamond registered with any company or web site is no substitution for having your diamond independently appraised and insured.