Diamonds (and, to a lesser degree, Colored Gems) many times come with a "Certificate" of Quality known as a "Cert". Initially, jewelers developed their own evaluations of Diamonds based upon their own parameters, but this led to a great deal of confusion on the part of customers who wanted to have some sort of  standard evaluation. So, a Foundation called the Gemological Institute of America developed their standardization parameters that could be used to "grade" a Diamond based upon the "Four C's - Color, Cut (shape) Clarity (how 'clean' the stone appears to under 10X magnification), Carat (weight) as well as the three properties of Polish, Symmetry and Fluorescence (reaction under UV light). These 'standards' are taught to all students taking the GIA courses to become a "Graduate Gemologist" and have become the "standard" worlwide. This did amazing things for the Diamond Industry. Dealers could begin to trust that a stone graded by a GIA Gemologist would be accurate to all. Unfortunately, because a Gemologist is a 'person' who has to give a personal determination as to a Diamond's quality, there is a "human factor" that enters into this process. This  resulted in some Gemologists grading stones more strictly than others even using the GIA Guidelines. Unfortunately, it has now come to a place where some Gemological Laboratories are known for such "loose" determinations that the Diamonds they grade are routinely 1-2 designations higher than they would be by more strict labs. Some Dealers have even felt the need to create a 'Disclaimer' that absolves them of any resposibility over disputes about a Diamond's Cert that they sold. As we have been in the business for over 40 years, we stand by strict grading Certs and only buy Diamonds graded by Labs that also stand by strict determinations. Those we work with are:    American Gemological Society, GIA New York, Intenational Gemological Laboratory and possibly one other.  Are Certs absolutely necesary? Not at all! Sometimes you can find a non-certed Diamond that is beautiful, very high in the 'Four Cs' and better priced than its "certed' counterpart. We sell those as well and if you desire a Certification, we have local Labs that will do an accurate one for you for a nominal fee. Thanks for taking the time to read this and I hope it clarifies any questions you may have about Diamond Grading. You are always welcome to call us for any further clarifications you need:) 

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