Lane Sales, Inc. Claims Policies and Procedures
Since 2002, Lane Sales, Inc. has been bringing you the highest quality floor covering products. Fortunately, we rarely see claims, and those we do see have been few and far between. However, more recently, we have seen an increase in number of claims being filed particularly in situations where defects are noticed or reported AFTER the flooring has been cut and/or installed.
As your sales representatives, we strive to provide you with excellent customer service. One facet of this service is our responsibility of making sure you are aware of and understand the policies and procedures that are necessary in recognizing and filing a claim.
Our goal in communicating this information to you is twofold; first, to make you aware of the mills’ expectations in a claim situation, and second, to inform you of procedures to ensure, that your claim is handled efficiently and effectively.
While we bring you mill partners that stand behind their products, we have all learned that quality control is not a perfect science. Many things can go wrong. There are times when defective products are delivered. Freight carriers and careless delivery personnel can contribute to damage after flooring leaves a mill. There are even natural phenomena that can occur, such as pooling & shading, which does not appear until the carpet has been installed.
We have all dealt with these issues; it’s now time we work together to reduce your exposure to potential claims.
Please read and study the below “Lane Sales Claim Policy and Procedures”. This is the framework from which we operate.
We look forward to enjoying many more years of our partnership with you and trust that your compliance with these policies and procedures will make the claims process run more smoothly and with better results.
Feel free to call us with any questions you may have.
Lane Sales, Inc.
Claims Policy and Procedures
Lane Sales Inc. is an independent sales agency under contract with various mills and importers to provide sales and marketing services. As such, Lane Sales, Inc. follows claims procedures that are set forth by the individual manufacturers and importers.
We strongly recommend that you read, interpret and understand each and every manufacturer’s warranty. Specifically look for exceptions to the warranty; such as issues which the warranty will NOT cover. For example, if a manufacturer’s warranty does not cover carpeting on stairs, you will not be reimbursed for a claim where carpeting is wearing thin on a staircase. Warranty information can be found on each mill’s website. Links to each mill’s website can be accessed through the "Products" area of this web site. If you are unsure about the application of a product in a certain setting or are confused about what may or may not be covered by a warranty, call the mill directly or contact your sales agent to clarify these questions. Be sure to put all of your communication in writing via email.
Inspect the packaging of the goods being received! If you see a break in the packaging, if the packaging looks replaced, if the exterior of the roll, rug or goods have ANY appearance of being damaged in transit, you must make a note on the recieving Bill of Ladding! ALL claims for freight damage must be taken up directly with the Carrier. However, you should make the mills Claims Department aware and several of the mills will work with you in registering a claim with the Carrier.
Once you have received your flooring, it should be thoroughly inspected. Inspect ALL of it, not just a random sample. Look at its color, texture, construction. Every facet of the product should be carefully examined. Have a second person inspect it so that nothing is overlooked. While this may be a bit time consuming, most claims can quickly and easily be remedied when an irregularity is noticed during this initial inspection.
What to do if an irregularity is noticed prior to cutting
If you see ANY irregularities in a product take a few photographs of it. The pictures should be taken from different angles, and as close up as possible. If you believe the product contains any irregularities which may prevent proper installation or lead to customer disapproval, send the photos with an email (copied to your sales representative), to the claims representative of the appropriate mill. Along with the photos, please include your name, your company’s name and account number, your contact phone number, the reference number and most importantly, a DETAILED explanation of what you see wrong with the product. Be specific, and try your best to refrain from “diagnosing” the issue; this is the job of an inspector or the claims dept. Simply relay the “symptoms” i.e.: tell them what doesn’t look right, and the claims representative will tell you how to proceed. We recommend that you follow up with a phone call shortly after sending the email to confirm that the email was received and that the claims representative was able to open the photos on his/her computer. If for any reason you feel you are not getting a timely response from the claims representative, (within 24 hours of contacting him or her), call or email your lane sales, sales representative.
Note: Many times a mill can pull out the balance of the roll, other rolls, cartons, etc... that are from the same exacxt production run or dye lot. They can find out if there have been any other claims for the same issue and/or see if they see the same suspected defect.
Some of our mills require the filing of a Claim Form. Each of these mills have their own claim form. You can find downloadable copies of each of these mill’s claim form below.
What to do if an irregularity is noticed following cutting but before installation
In the event you see an irregularity after the carpet has been cut but it has not yet been installed, please do the same as you would if you noticed the irregularity prior to cutting. However, please add an explanation with the timing of the cutting vs. the timing of when the irregularity was discovered. Please note that most manufacuturers are not going to take carpet back, once it has been cut!
The flooring is being or was installed and issues have arisen
When an installation issue or problem arises immediately following installation, please take photographs and email them (copying your sales representative), to the claims representative with a detailed explanation of what is going on. Include the type and brand of adhesive, padding, seaming tape used, etc... and any other specifics about the installtion process (i.e.: conventional installation over what type of padding, direct glue down, for carpet, floating for wood, etc.). The sooner the mill can get to the root of the problem, the better. Follow up with a phone call to the claims agent to make sure they received all of the information.
Irregularities which surface following installation
When flooring installations are complete and the customer has signed off, this is the time that the warranty comes into play. As stressed above, please read, interpret and understand both the coverage and timing associated with the manufacturer’s warranty. Most manufacturing defects become evident within the first year of the product’s use. Should an issue come up a few weeks or months following the installation, please send photographs with a detailed explanation and contact information(with a copy to your sales representative) to the claims representative of the mill. They will decide how to proceed. As always, follow up with a phone call to be sure the information was received.
Frequently, we are asked by our customers to have an independent inspector sent to the claim site. While we can make the request, it’s the mill's choice whether or not to call for an independent inspection based upon the information, that has been given. If the claims representative feels that an independent inspection is warranted, they will reach out to you to obtain the end-user’s contact information.
Requests for Sales Agents to Visit Claim Sites
Most mills do NOT sanction having a Sales Representative perform an inspection. Most mills can resolve claims often by looking at other product from the same manufacuturing run, roll or lot and when needed prefer to send an independent inspector.