Authentication & Appraisal

Watch Authentication

With a fast growing tech-savvy population of watch enthusiasts, the purchase of luxury timepieces over the internet can be carried out with much ease and convenience. Any watch from any corner of the world could be purchased and couriered to your doorstep in a matter of days! We could well imagine your delight when your ‘grail’ watch is delivered in a parcel to your doorstep at the click of a button! Unfortunately, this ease and convenience has also led to a proliferation of replicas and outright fakes being spawned off as real deals, leading to substantial losses as a result.

How does one then ensure the provenance and authenticity of one’s newly acquired ‘grails’ in addition to taking the trouble, time and effort to personally travel to the source and personally inspect the watch?

BONFIELD’s watch authentication service offers reassurance that a watch is exactly what it purports to be, prior to its valuation or at the point of sale.

BONFIELD’s valuers regularly see four different categories of watches:

  • The genuine watch is still in its original condition, which will command the
    full value
  • The genuine watch is in its original condition with embellishments such as customised diamonds which may
    in fact devalue it
  • The watch is made from genuine components sourced from different models, which will be of significantly
    lesser value
  • A well made copy which is partially counterfeit and of very little value

Appraisal Why Do You Need a Watch Appraisal?

Losing or damaging a precious watch/jewellery is always distressing and none of us likes the loss of a treasured watch/jewellery.

As with all treasured possessions, we would safekeep our watch/jewellery by insuring them. Unfortunately, this is when confusion arises. Your typical insurance policy taken out on your prized possessions would not indicate a value or fixed sum. Instead, the insurance company generally values any insured items under “replacement market value”, and not the sum you would expect in the even the watch/jewellery is lost. Furthermore, the onus falls upon the owner to prove to the insurance company that the watch/jewellery was worth such an amount at the time of loss. If there is an inability to prove, the insurance company would, based on the advice of claims adjuster, pay out only what it deems fit for your lost watch/ jewellery.

BONFIELD’s appraisal is able to provide you with peace of mind when asked to provide appraisal documentation by the insurance company. Without which one would be left with little or no room to argue or assess the real value of one’s prized possession.

Insurance claims involving items covered by BONFIELD’s appraisal are straightforward and likely to result in a quicker and much more satisfactory outcome for you. Many major global insurers recognise BONFIELD’s appraisal.


The procedure of valuation includes digital photography of the appraised timepiece and a detailed assessment as indicated in the above paragraphs; the replacement value will also be indicated. BONFIELD promises an unbiased opinion for each valuation.

This service will determine the provenance, service history, gemology and a specific detailed analysis of the crown, dial, case, its complications and band of your appraised timepiece.

The Valuation Procedure

  • An experienced expert carefully assesses the watch under a 10x microscope, using their expertise to scrutinise any distinctive characteristics and to determine its authenticity
  • Our trained watchmaker opens the watchcase to authenticate the calibre /movement numbers
  • All serial numbers are recorded and checked
  • The watch is case back in line with the manufacturers’ recommended procedures
  • Digital photographs are taken and included in your valuation document with a full and accurate description. Any distinguishing features are also recorded
  • An experienced expert carefully assesses the watch under a 10x microscope, using their expertise to scrutinise any distinctive characteristics and to determine its authenticity
  • A Valuation Report is generated
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