• Report: #1134270

Complaint Review: Universal Diamond Exchange

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  • Submitted: Thu, March 27, 2014
  • Updated: Sat, May 24, 2014

  • Reported By: Sean — Concord North Carolina
Universal Diamond Exchange
608 S Hill St Los Angeles, California USA

Universal Diamond Exchange, Goel Tala Diamonds, Inc. Sold engagement ring with bent prongs, missed spots in the gold plating and cracked diamond! Los Angeles California

*Author of original report: Mr Tala's caught in more lies...

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Diamond Ring

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I purchased an 18k white gold 3-Stone Princess cut diamond engagement ring from Goel Tala Diamonds out of Los Angeles on 2/26/2014. I made two different payments for the ring. The first payment was sent on 2/21/2014 thru Bank of America. The second payment was for $675.00 thru Wells Fargo and was the final amount owed. I received the ring on 3/07/2014. When I opened it up, the ring had spots on the gold band itself. I tried wiping them off with a cloth but it would not come off. I contacted the business and was advised to wipe the ring with alcohol by an employee named “Kat” that works there. She stated that if that did not work, to call back. I immediately called back because that did not work. The owner called me back and said it was a simple polishing issue and to send it back and he would take care of it. I sent the ring back on 3/15/2014.

 

On 3/21/2014, I re-received the ring back from Goel Tala. This time, I opened it up, the spots were gone on the band, but two of the center prongs were rough looking and appeared to not even have the gold plating on them. I called the owner again and he stated he didn’t see anything wrong with it.  I advised him it hasn't been handled or worn and that it is visible to the naked eye and that obviously its messed up there. He stated “She will love the ring and won’t even notice it.” I told him that I noticed it and I didn’t want to give my future fiancé a ring with obvious visible flaws on it. He told me that it just needs re-plating and I could either send it back(again), or go to a local jeweler and have them re-plate it and he would re-imburse me as long as it was less than $25.00 and if it was going to be more, than I would have to send it back. Due to being so close to my proposal date, I preferred to do it local to ensure I had the ring on time. He stated it should only be about $10 because that's what he charges in downtown Los Angeles and with things being more expensive in California, it should be cheaper than that here.

I went to Jared’s retail store here in Concord who wanted $44.99, then visited Marks & Morgan who wanted $34.99. Neither of those two business’ looked at the ring as I simply inquired on having it re-plated. My third visit was to Ellis Jewelers, who is a very respected jeweler in downtown Concord whom has been here for 2 generations. I questioned them on the plating and they asked if I had the ring to look at it. They told me to hold on, they wanted to look with a magnifying glass to make sure it wasn't simply a polish needed. Immediately when she looked at it, she said "Oh my gosh, is this ring used?" I stated no and she said "Are you aware your side stones are about to fall out?" Completely shocked, I said “What?!?” She stated there were several issues with the ring.

She stated, first, the diamonds were seated correctly, but the prongs themselves were not even secured over the diamonds as they’re supposed to be. She stated, there’s not supposed to be any space or gap between the prongs and the stones themselves. Secondly, she said the prongs are all crooked, some are bent fine and secure over the stone flush as supposed to be and then others were not even touching them…like the prongs are “hovering” over the stones. Then she goes on to say that, 3 of the prongs look "cut-off" and there not even smooth on top, like "someone cut off the prong b/c it was too long and then bent it over the stone." If that wasn’t bad enough, she shows me where the main stone had what appeared to be a crack/fracture on the side of it where the prong holding it in appeared to be pushed over on it so hard causing damage to it. She went over to the owner of the business, Dan Ellis, who came out, looked at it and said the exact same things without even conversing with his employee on what she saw. He was telling me all this and then asked if I’d like to see what he was talking about. I said “absolutely, so I will know what I’m being told” so he showed me the same things under a microscope. It looks absolutely horrible! He took one of his rings(of exact same design; a white gold, 3 stone princess cut engagement ring) and put it under scope to compare. No jagged/bent/cut off prongs, no spotting in the gold plating and all prongs bent over secured on top of the stones flush w/ no gaps like this one. Three of the side prongs weren’t even bent over to secure the stones at all. He took a small needle tool and showed me the gap between the stones and the prongs where there was an obvious space showing the prong was not flush on top of the stone securing it. He stated, “These are supposed to be flat and flush on top of the stone, without gaps.” He then said “I’m not trying to speak negative of someone’s work, but this is a really poor poor job of craftsmanship.” Mr. Ellis was not trying to sell me any rings, he was simply showing me the issues with the ring I had and was concerned about the stones falling out.

As soon as I left the jewelry store, I contacted Tony(Goel Tala owner) again to notify him of the findings. He was not there so I left a message for him to call me ASAP. When he called me back, immediately, he began interrupting me and getting defensive when telling him the news. He was sarcastic at first stating “So your gonna tell me the diamonds are cubic zirconia’s next, right?” I advised him no, that I was simply relaying to him the information I found out and saw with my own eyes. He kept stating all this was a polishing issue and that those guys at the jewelry store don’t know what they’re talking about. He stated that was they’re job to try and point out flaws so they would get my business. I advised him that it wasn’t an issue of them not knowing what they’re talking about…I stated I saw all these flaws with my owns eyes and the craftsmanship looks awful! He started yelling at me to return it and he’d fix it. I continued to tell him I had already done that once and am not willing to keep returning it and this time it wasn’t simply a polishing issue, it was that the entire ring was screwed up! I told him all I wanted was a refund and he said “Well your not gonna get it!” and then he actually hung up on me.

I called him back and he didn’t answer so I left a voicemail for him stating I have no choice but to go thru my bank and file a fraud claim since he's not willing to honor his "14 day 100% satisfaction guarantee." He called me back 15 minutes later apologizing for losing his temper. He stated he let his temper get the best of him and that if I would send it back, he'd make a whole new ring. Then he stated he’s already started one and this time he would personally oversee it. I said, well, wouldn’t you have overseen the first time? Rings shouldn’t have to be sent back time and time again to be corrected. He stated since this is a “hand-made ring”, that it cannot be “perfect”. I am aware of that, however, that doesn’t mean that you can cut corners, be sloppy, and send defective merchandise to your customers! He then states that 99% of all ring settings are pre-made which goes against what he said it being “hand-made”? So with that said, he buys pre-manufactured settings that are defective from the factory??? It seemed at times he was contradicting his own self. I’m proposing on April 8th, 2014. I explained this to him, and that I’ve already sent it back one time with problems and I don't have time and am not willing to take the chance again(especially w/ the condition this ring was in both times it arrived). He again stated the jeweler I saw was just trying to get my business, etc. and he wasn't giving me a refund period. He said I got a great deal and that she would love the ring. I told him I can’t give her a ring knowing what I know about this one. He kept saying it was all polishing issues which obviously is not the case. I quoted the "100% satisfaction guarantee" and he stated there’s more to it than that and he would charge me restocking fees, etc. if forced to refund me and that then it was only for 14 days. I advised him that both times it arrived defective I contacted him prior to 14 days to try and make it right. He kept telling me there was more to his policy than that and my only option was to return it and he’d send me another one or keep what I have. I told him I would be contacting my bank and he stated that’s fine because he “knows what to tell them and I will not win a case against him period!”

All I was simply wanting was to return the ring for a full refund due to the obvious issues with the ring. I have already sent it back for repairs once and am not willing to continue doing this because honestly, I shouldn't have to. The quality should not be so poor as to where I should have to continue sending a "hand-made" ring back and forth getting it repaired. I honestly believe that the reason he is not willing to accept a return for refund is because he knows the ring is of poor quality and feels he cannot re-sell it. He continued to yell at me stating I got a great deal and won’t find another deal like it. If that's the case, he shouldn't have any problem finding someone else to buy it...I just hope they get to see it first before ordering blind like I unfortunately did going off a description only. Now I am forced to try and find another engagement ring within less than 2 weeks as I have the proposal location and preparation planned but now no longer have the most important piece.


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/27/2014 03:52 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Universal-Diamond-Exchange/Los-Angeles-California-90014/Universal-Diamond-Exchange-Goel-Tala-Diamonds-Inc-Sold-engagement-ring-with-bent-prong-1134270. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
1Author 0Consumer 1Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Author of original report

Mr Tala's caught in more lies...

AUTHOR: austinseanchris - ()

First off, I will agree with Mr. Tala in the event that he did get this ring shipped out in less than a week from me placing the order. But, when you cut corners and perform poor work, anything can be rushed through...kinda like the quality of this product. Reading Mr. Tala's rebuttal, I would like to touch on all the points he highlighted. Im not sure if he has a case of amnesia to the point where he cannot remember things, but I simply would like to set the record straight in the way the events transpired. Mr. Tala claims that the first time I sent the ring back, "We received the ring and examined it thoroughly for any blemishes or spots. We did not find any issues." I would like to stop right there and say, Why would I go thru the motions and send a ring back if nothing was wrong with it? That makes no sense. In actuality, I've got pictures to show the spots on the band. Maybe Mr. Tala really didnt see the spots and maybe thats the entire problem. He claims to not see anything wrong with the ring. Maybe he's losing his eyesight or simply doesnt care about the quality of his products?

Now, Mr. Tala claims that he sent me the ring back and "I claimed that the ring was fine and he would just have it checked for a peace of mind." Once again, not the case here. The spots on the band were indeed gone, however, now there was a spot on the center prong that looked like the gold coating was completely gone! I called Mr. Tala and he stated that I could take it to a local jeweler and have them re-coat it. He was the one who told me to take it to a jeweler. He stated he would re-imburse me whatever the charge was as long as it wasnt over $35. He said if it was over $35, to send it back and he would do re-plate it. Now, this was all on the same day, not "a couple days later" like Mr. Tala claims. I went to Jared, Marks and Morgan and a 2 generation local jeweler here in Concord. They stated all of the things that were wrong that I listed in my original post. I would like to add to that this jeweler is not "struggling to keep its doors open" like Mr. Tala claims all retails stores do. Thats funny b/c theres about 50 retails jewelry stores in the city I live in. I wasnt aware that they were all "closing the doors". So, I immediately called Mr. Tala after leaving the jewelery store. I didnt wait "a couple of days", etc. Mr. Tala continues to make claims that "this ring is handmade" and so on. So, is that his way of saying that "I can make defective merchandise and sell it to people who are unsuspecting?" Hand made, machine made or however its made, I dont see where bent & cut off prongs, stones falling out and the coating missing makes it an excuse? Bottom line is Mr. Tala sells awful handmade jewelry and unfortunately it shows.

Mr. Tala goes on to share how much this ring would cost in stores, and what certifications it has along with how the jeweler I had went to was making false accusations. You could physically look at the ring and all the imperfections before even taking it to a jeweler. Had there of been no imperfections, I would have never of went to the jewelry store in the first place. Had he of made a good quality ring the first time around, we would not be where we are now. I shouldnt have to send a ring back 2 and 3 times because the quality and craftsmanship are hideous. I dont know anyone who has had to send they're engagement ring back twice b/c it had blemishes.

I do find it funny how Mr. Tala claims that he did not see any blemishes, etc when sending the ring back. BUT, on the phone after getting the ring back the second time, Mr. Tala claims he has personally not even seen the ring, nor did he make it?!? So hang on a second, I thought you "handmake" every ring? But then he says, he didnt make that one, but he'll personally make me a replacement one? So how do you know that there were not any blemishes if you havent even layed eyes on it? Mr. Tala is getting caught in more and more lies the more he talks. I understand the owner is not going to openly admitt to his merchandise being defective b/c that will take business away from him. And to be honest, it should not of had to go this far. I thought that considering the fact that I had already returned the ring once and it was still not right, I was going to choose to take my business elsewhere. Thats ultimately all I wanted and based on his website quote, "If you are  not 100% satisfied with your purchase, you may return it to our offices within 14 days of the shipment date for a full refund or exchange." Now, obviously, I contacted him well within 14 days both times I received the ring. So here's a guy not even honoring his own return policy?!? Now unless I'm reading it wrong, that means if I'm not happy for whatever reason, I should be allowed to return it regardless for a refund. Well, apparently, thats just something to make potential customers feel all warm and fuzzy since he doesnt follow that pledge.

And lastly, for those who are not fully convinced on how Mr. Tala acts and conducts his business, he contacted me by email 3 days ago. This was his message that was blocked and sent to junk mail:

 

"Sean,

you were denied both original disputes and then you opened disputes again. Now the credit card company want to have a mediation. The fact is that I do not have the time for you. You are a waste of my time and a sad human being. I made less than $200 hundred dollars on your ring and I had to deal with all your non sense. If you do not return my ring I will contact the Bank and send them this email of your refusal to return the ring. You deserve nothing more than to over pay for the same Quality ring or less. All the liable comments and accusations you made will be brought back upon you when your girlfriend finds out what kind of person she is dealing with and leaves you. Do not email me any more of your non-sense. You disputed the transaction and now I am authorizing you to send back the ring for credit on your card. If I do not receive my ring back by Tuesday I will notify the bank that you are a thief as well."
 
 
 
I'm not stooping to Mr. Tala's level to communicate with him. Once again, more lies to look innocent...As far as the bank, they never "denied both my original disputes". Actually, I only opened 1 with Bank of America and 1 with Wachovia. They were actually about to close them out b/c Mr. Tala hadnt responded to the claim. He was alotted a certain amount of time and he only had a few days left before he replied. I have all documentation in hand and all of that has been faxed to the bank. I have spoken with both banks on numerous occaisions and have sent the merchandise back to him as requested by the banks. It was Mr. Tala who refused the merchandise which was sent 3-day Priority Mail(at my expense) back to him on April 2, 2014. Which, I cant say that I blame him, I wouldnt want his merchandise either! And Mr. Tala, my fiance is aware of you and your merchandise. She is aware of everything and all your accusations. She along with the rest of the family and anyone/everyone else I know is aware of your business.
 
So once again, I conclude that Mr. Tala is not honoring his policies that he does on his website and it truely speaks volumes on what kind of character he really is. You can tell by the way he talks to people and the comments he has made towards me, he is definitely not professional, nor does he act like the owner of a business. Instead he acts like a child, make false accusations, does not stand behind his products and would instead make lies to cover his trails. I hope that potential customers are aware of the problems they may encounter if they choose to do business with this individual. If you do chance it, I wish you the best of luck.
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#2 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Diamond Ring

AUTHOR: Goel Tala - ()

 

 I am Goel Tala the owner  of Universal Diamond Exchange. I sold Mr. Sean Austin an EGL Certified Diamond ring on February 26, 2014. We custom make every ring for each clients Individual finger size and order the center Diamond directly from Sources in Israel and Belgium to save our clients thousands of dollars. We made Mr. Austin a ring and shipped it to him less than a week after he placed an order. We received a call from Mr. Austin after he received his ring with a complaint that the ring had spots on the band. We send Mr. Austin a shipping label and asked him to send the ring back to us for re-polishing. We received the ring and examined it thoroughly for any blemishes or spots. We did not find any issues. For Quality control we re-polished the ring and checked all the stones. We called Mr. Austin and asked him if there were any other issue's with the ring. Mr. Austin said there was NOT, so we sent the ring back to him. After Mr. Austin received the ring for the second time he claimed that the ring was fine and he would just have it checked for a peace of mind. After a few days we received another telephone call from Mr. Austin with a whole new list of accusations and issue's with the ring. Mr. Austin was told by a competition jeweler that the ring was not set properly and MIGHT have issue's with side stones falling out. We explained to Mr. Austin that this ring was handmade and if he should have any problem we would replace the side stones free of charge for two years. We also offered Mr. Austin a replacement ring free of charge to ease his mind. Mr. Austin refused both of our proposals and demanded his money back. Regardless of where you purchase your Engagement ring from there is always a chance that a side stone will fall out. The important thing is that the company you buy from will take care of you when there is an issue. We always go above and beyond to accommodate all our clients.

 Mr. Austin purchased an 18K White gold Diamond Engagement ring with 1.80cts of Princess cut Diamonds for $2,175. The center Diamond was certified by EGL and graded a D-SI1. Most jewelry stores charge over $6,000 for this ring. As a result of not being able to compete with our prices or not wanting to, the jewelry store Mr. Austin went to gave a bias appraisal of this ring. There after Mr. Austin decided to unfairly accuse us of selling him a ring with not properly set Diamonds and writing this liable review. We have been in business for over 25 years and 99.9% of our clients are all satisfied with their purchase. Retail jewelry stores are struggling to keep their doors open and must charge much more than on-line sellers due to their high rent and other expenses. Their only recourse is to talk badly about other jewelers work and product. We have taken the liberty of placing pictures of the ring purchased by Mr. Austin. We are confident that any potential clients will judge us on our thousands of good reviews and not by this one bad one.

 

         Respectfully

            Goel Tala

 

 

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