Product Liability Insurance for Umbrellas imported from China

Discussion in 'International Business' started by GivingisLiving, Feb 27, 2020.

  1. GivingisLiving

    GivingisLiving UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    7 0
    Hi Everyone

    I have recently imported umbrellas from China to sell, as a project with charities. Naively I didn't think that getting product liability insurance would be an issue. but it does seem to be. Does anyone know a UK insurance company that would cover this?

    Also whilst my product is pretty good quality and my manufacturer generally did a good job, there are a few quality issues. As the product is an umbrella there is no way to tell how many of my shipment is affected, without opening all the umbrellas making them less saleable. When repacking they look used. I have contacted the manufacturer but am not optimistic as they are in China. How do other people who import check quality when items are packaged ready for sale. Sorry, as you can probably tell I am new to selling imported product. As far as I am aware, my Chinese supplier isn't offering Rights to Recourse.

    Any help/advice greatly appreciated.
     
    Posted: Feb 27, 2020 By: GivingisLiving Member since: Feb 27, 2020
    #1
  2. Mr D

    Mr D UKBF Legend Free Member

    24,357 2,959
    When buying anything its a good idea to do quality checks, either initially with samples or with the main delivery by checking random items until you are satisfied.

    Can you repack a different way so it doesn't look used? Been a while since last owned an umbrella but looked good still even after being opened dozens of times.

    Perhaps tie a ribbon around the brolly? Perhaps package in slightly different packaging?
     
    Posted: Feb 27, 2020 By: Mr D Member since: Feb 12, 2017
    #2
  3. GivingisLiving

    GivingisLiving UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    7 0
    Thanks @Mr D. I did get samples before purchasing. They were fine. However, there are definitely a few small but significant issues that have been noted in the full shipment.

    The umbrellas are packed in a sealed branded plastic sleeve and have a fabric sleeve and tags, so I really can’t repack.
     
    Posted: Feb 27, 2020 By: GivingisLiving Member since: Feb 27, 2020
    #3
  4. Mr D

    Mr D UKBF Legend Free Member

    24,357 2,959
    So buy a sealer and reseal afterwards.

    You'll probably need one anyway - buyers will buy, open item, then decide to return it. You planning on binning those items or trying to sell them?
     
    Posted: Feb 27, 2020 By: Mr D Member since: Feb 12, 2017
    #4
  5. GraemeL

    GraemeL Pain in the neck? Full Member - Verified Business

    5,129 1,108
    Always, always, always, have a QC check done at the factory before the products are despatched, unless you can afford the financial and/or the reputational loss of quality issues. There are loads of companies in China you can use.

    In effect, you can never rely on refunds from a chinese factory. Once the products leave the factory, the risk is yours.

    You should easily be able to get product liability and public liability insurance. Try https://www.lockyers.co.uk/
     
    Posted: Feb 28, 2020 By: GraemeL Member since: Sep 7, 2011
    #5
    • Thanks Thanks x 2
    • Useful Useful x 1
    • List
  6. CHUKTC

    CHUKTC UKBF Regular Free Member

    172 29
    The issues you raise here start at the very beginning of the process. We always advise following the process below.
    1. Check who you are dealing with. Are they a factory or an agent? Most advertisers on Alibaba for instance will be agents not factories. Do you really know the answer? Many suppliers will tell you they are factories when they are anything but. Some will go to great lengths to convince you even taking around 'their factory' if you visit (It's not its someone elses!). We always start with careful checks so we know who you are dealing with. Why does this matter? There are many ore risks dealing with an agent. They can disappear if things go wrong, they have little control over production and at worst they may send samples from one factory only to place your order with another (cheaper) factory once you buy in bulk.
    2. Negotiate the right contract and terms to protect you against problems. Make sure there are terms regarding compensation for faulty goods, damage and shortfalls. This needs to be written in Chinese (so there is no misunderstanding). Terms used in the agreement should be defined (what is termed faulty etc).
    3. Before shipping inspect the goods before they are loaded into the container. Don't rely on the factories QC until you have dealt with them many times and arrange your own inspections. Dint pay the balance until a satisfactory inspection has been performed.
    Following these steps will reduce the risk of problems but will not eliminate them completely.

    Product liability insurance for goods made in China is extra ordinarily difficult to obtain. Insurers will require you to go through many hoops and provide a large amount of documentation and in practice this usually proves impossible to obtain. There have been a number of good post on this issue here in the past.

    Regarding compensation at this stage I would suggest firstly looking closely at your agreement with them and the terms. This may be stated on the invoice if you don't have a separate document. If it's an agent you bought through you may find it very difficult but if it's a factory they may be more helpful. Do you speak Chinese? If not it might be worth seeking help as it's remarkable how when problems arise your suppliers command of English suddenly diminishes. If you need some further help we would be happy to assist - contact me on [email protected].
     
    Posted: Feb 28, 2020 By: CHUKTC Member since: Jan 2, 2019
    #6
  7. Ian Howard

    Ian Howard UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    3 0
    You need to ensure that you have a method of solving disputes or sending returns in case the wrong products are sent to you. The best way we are doing is to ask the supplier to send inspection videos with photos before shipping.

    If the issue is with the supplier, then the supplier will have return policies. Most importantly, always select suppliers for your umbrellas from the type of suppliers that you can manage. Choose suppliers who have good reviews online, and those that your laws keep in touch or even ask how you are faring after the purchase.
     
    Posted: Sep 11, 2020 By: Ian Howard Member since: Sep 11, 2020
    #7
  8. GraemeL

    GraemeL Pain in the neck? Full Member - Verified Business

    5,129 1,108
    You have experience in dealing with China?
     
    Posted: Sep 11, 2020 By: GraemeL Member since: Sep 7, 2011
    #8
  9. Paul Norman

    Paul Norman UKBF Ace Free Member

    2,780 866
    Here is one of the pit falls of importing goods when you are not experienced at it.

    As the goods are of poor quality, an insurance company is going to charge a lot for the declared inferior quality. You could just not declare it. That is an extremely dodgy way forward and could bite you painfully.

    You are right that the manufacturer will probably not want to know. But that is the correct line of approach, and if it fails, you are just going to have to get what you can for the umbrellas.

    I would check them. I check inside any goods I am dubious about - and obviously that means the packaging will reveal I have done this. If someone challenged it, I would explain I quality checked the stuff.
     
    Posted: Sep 11, 2020 By: Paul Norman Member since: Apr 8, 2010
    #9
  10. Chris Ashdown

    Chris Ashdown UKBF Legend Free Member

    11,868 2,471
    Just open them up and check and place back in the fabric cover and send out like that or with the plastic bag if that looks presentable, most when brought will not have the plastic cover when in shops, you are being to fussy, better to check first at your leisure than have the hassle of returns and getting bad reviews
     
    Posted: Sep 11, 2020 By: Chris Ashdown Member since: Dec 7, 2003
    #10
  11. GraemeL

    GraemeL Pain in the neck? Full Member - Verified Business

    5,129 1,108
    its an old post........
    Resurected by someone who suggested a video provided by the supplier before shipping was the best way to avoid similar issues.
     
    Posted: Sep 11, 2020 By: GraemeL Member since: Sep 7, 2011
    #11
  12. Ian Howard

    Ian Howard UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    3 0
    Yes, I import umbrellas from China over 6years. A good manufacturer not only offers videos but also sends an inspection report when goods ready. You will pay when you think all fine. It will protect you well.
     
    Posted: Sep 11, 2020 By: Ian Howard Member since: Sep 11, 2020
    #12