When buying a diamond it is important to have a Diamond Grading Certificate accompany the stone. The report, or certificate, includes an evaluation of the diamond’s color, clarity, cut, and carat weight – but does attach a value or price. An independent and objective lab (such as GIA, EGL or AGS) examines and grades the stone and issues the report.
Certificates give the buyer peace of mind and documentation that verifies that the diamond being purchased is of the quality represented. The certificate also has a plotted diagram of its clarity characteristics and a graphic representation of the diamond’s proportions, this can make your stone more easily identifiable – like having your diamond’s ‘fingerprint’ on record. Many certified diamonds (including the Firelight Diamond®) have laser inscriptions on their girdles. The inscription may include a logo or identification number to aid in rapid identification.
Diamonds under 0.15 carats are not certified. Diamonds that have undergone unstable treatments such as fracture filling or coating are also excluded. Stable treatments such as HPHT or laser drilling may be certified but the treatments will be disclosed on the report.
GIA is the most highly regarded gem laboratory and has the most stringent grading criteria. A diamond can be sent to multiple labs for certification and the results may vary. Different labs have developed their own grading scales, but GIA’s is the most widely recognized and respected, making it the industry standard utilized by most laboratories.