What is a Hallmark?
Your Guarantee of Purity
All diamond pieces on the Diamondsmith website are made in either Platinum 950 or 18k Gold; they are sent to hallmarked in the Assay Office in London before sending it out to customers. All our precious metal products comply with the Hallmarking Act, so you can be confident that what you buy from Diamondsmith is ‘real’ and as described. Unfortunately, many overseas websites are not bound by UK law and do not offer the same guarantee that the items they sell are genuine.
Under the Hallmarking Act 1973 all dealers supplying precious metal items must display a notice explaining the approved hallmarks. This must be in the form produced by the British Hallmarking Council.
The Full Traditional Hallmark comprises five marks:
- Sponsor’s mark
- Traditional fineness mark
- Millesimal fineness mark
- Assay Office mark
- Date letter mark
Protecting Jewellery Shoppers
All items (over certain weights) sold in the UK and described as being made from gold, silver, platinum or palladium must have a legally recognised hallmark. The law is set out in the Hallmarking Act 1973 (which has been amended and updated on various occasions).
Finenesses recognised under the Convention are:
The purpose of hallmarking is to protect buyers of precious metal items against fraud. The hallmark is a mark which shows that the item has been independently tested and verified as matching its description, and conforming to all legal standards of purity or fineness of the metal.
Precious metals, such as gold, silver, platinum and palladium, are rarely used in their purest form. They are mixed with other metals to form an alloy that has the desired colour and strength. It is very difficult to know what an item of jewellery is made of just by looking at it or touching it. Hallmarking protects consumers by certifying the precious metal content of the piece so that the buyer knows that the item is genuinely what the seller says it is.
Online selling of jewellery increases the risk to consumers, but the hallmark gives the buyer confidence that the products are genuinely what they say they are.
If a precious metal item weighs less than a certain amount it is not compulsory to apply a hallmark. The minimum weight thresholds are:
- gold 1 gram
- silver 7.78 grams
- platinum 0.5 gram
- palladium 1 gram