Filing a Claim

Below are the personal opinions of James B. Smith, owner of this domain. Note that the underlined text is hyper-linked and will take you to a page with additional information on that topic.

If you think you have a manufacturing defect such as fading, yarn slippage, or delamination, then you are likely to find that the complaint handling procedure does not work much better in the floorcovering industry than it does with credit cards or phone bill complaints. However, by following the procedures listed below, you may eventually get fair compensation if your claim is legitimate.

First: Contact the dealer or the place where you purchased the carpet and tell them what the problem is and ask for an inspection. The carpet mill then should commission the inspection. If not, then call me and I will come out or refer you to someone.

  • When the inspector arrives:
    • Ask for a business card.
    • Ask for credentials. Most inspectors are certified through the IICRC and thus should carry an identification card.
    • Ask what the issue of the report is going to be. An issue like 'wear' has strict legal definition that has to do with the loss of face yarn, whereas wearability is a broader term that has to do with appearance.
    • Note the amount of time spent doing the inspection.
    • Note where observations are made and what tests were performed. You might ask what the results of the test are and what the standard is too.
    • Do not ask the inspector direct questions about what his opinion is of your problem. His commissioner is paying him for that information and unless otherwise specified, that opinion is confidential.

Second: After the inspection...

  • Ask the dealer for a copy of the report.
  • Obtain your own inspector if you are not happy with the outcome of the mill's report.

In Court you might have the inspector disqualified by saying something like this: "Your Honor, defendant expert has no credentials, he has chosen an issue for his report that does not relate to the question we are deciding today, he only spent 15 minutes in my house, and he preformed no tests supporting his opinion. I request that he be dismissed as an expert.

Many individuals involved in the complaint handling system get worn down by numbers unproductive phone calls they make trying to resolve their complaint. Therefore, try making fewer calls and rely upon short letters and faxes. Your remembrance of the aggravation that voice-mail caused use will be difficult to introduce as evidence if you go to court. The letters and/or faxes will be easier for the other party to keep record of what was said and when. The short letter or fax will sound better if read in court, especially if you write it in a polite professional manner. Hopefully too, it will say the court time on understanding your case. Always say in your written correspondence, 'PLEASE RESPOND BACK IN WRITING IN TEN, (10) BUSINESS DAYS.' In other words, do not let the dispute linger on without a resolution; always put a reasonable time limit on when to respond.

If you need technical help on understanding the problem your carpet is having and if possibly the other side does too, then commission your own inspector. Check the referrals on this domain and/or click on this underline text.