Bonded and Insured - WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miami Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco

Bonded and Insured

WSVN -- Jim and Elena wanted to have a nice 50th wedding anniversary and decided to take a cruise.

"Nothing like the water on the Caribbean .. bluer than blue, bluer than blue."

For the cruise Elena wanted to take a special pair of earrings Jim had bought her for their 49th wedding anniversary.

Elena Gombar: "And I went into the closet and the box wasn't there. Maybe I put it someplace else."

Elena had left the box with the two carat diamond earrings right here. For days they searched and then...

Elena Gombar: "And one day when I went into my closet I looked on the opposite side behind my blouses that were hanging and there was the box. Opened and tossed on the side like somebody had thrown it after they took the earrings out."

The diamond earrings that Jim had paid $8,000 for were gone. Suspicion turned to the only one they let in their house, a maid company.

Elena Gombar: "There was nobody else. No other service. No painter. No floor polisher in the house. It had to be them."

The Gombars had hired the maid service for one simple reason, they advertised that they were bonded and insured.

Elena Gombar: "So to me I interpreted that God forbid something happens to them when they are working for me they are covered. And God forbid they take anything while working for me I am covered."

They called the maid company who told them to call their bonding company. More bad news.

Elena Gombar: "The bonding company said they are only in play if there is a conviction."

The Broward Sheriffs Office did investigate, but the problem Elena and Jim could not be sure when the earrings were stolen, and the company had sent several different maids and trainees to their house.

Jim Gombar: "In total instead of two there might have been 10 or 12 that were in and out."

The fact that someone Elena trusted, that she brought into her home would steal her earrings that she had hidden in a closet, disappoints her.

Elena Gombar: "Sick. Sick to think that somebody would do that. Somebody that works for you, somebody that I felt I treated well. I couldn't believe it."

But they thought they had prepared for the unbelievable by hiring a company that was bonded and insured..

Jim Gombar: "So we are trying to find out ... very simple what does it mean."

Elena Gombar: Really and are they responsible or aren't they responsible?"

Well Howard, whether you hire a painter or a maid what does bonded and insured mean?

Howard Finkelstein: "When a company is bonded and insured if their employee steals, you get re-imbursed. If there is a conviction. If they break something and its clear they did it, they have to pay."

I spoke to the Molly Maid franchise owner in Weston who told me the Gombar's should contact his insurance company, which they had already done.

I then spoke to Molly Maids corporate people. A spokesman wrote that the franchisee did background checks on all the people who had been in Elena's house. That the franchisee had fully co-operated with the police. He added our insurance policy does not pay claims without a criminal conviction.

Howard Finkelstein: "And that is the problem with bonded and insured. Unless you catch the crook on videotape stealing or pawning the merchandise, its virtually impossible to get a conviction because you cant prove they took it."

Odds are no one will ever be charged. But on the bright side, Jim and Elena had a wonderful cruise and in retirement, still continue to learn lessons.

Elena Gombar: "That bonded and insured does not mean that I am covered then I have to live with that and let the buyer beware."

Elena Gombar: "Nobody can be trusted. No matter what they say, no matter what the company advertisement, is you are on your own."

Patrick Fraser: "Now since its clear bonded and insured is not what people think. It is the best way to protect yourself. If its valuable, hide it, lock it up and check your insurance because many require an additional policy to cover valuable items like jewelry."

A mess made you feel miserable? Need someone to clean up? Contact us, we aren't treasures, we aren't diamonds in the rough but we work hard.

Contact Help Me Howard:

E-mail: helpmehoward@wsvn.com (please include your contact phone number when e-mailing)

Reporter: Patrick Fraser at pfraser@wsvn.com

Miami-Dade: 305-953-WSVN

Broward: 954-761-WSVN

 

  • Out for JusticeMore>>

  • Heather Riggio

    Heather Riggio

    Friday, August 8 2014 11:45 PM EDT2014-08-09 03:45:59 GMT
    Heather RiggioHeather Riggio
    She was only 19 years old and made a mistake that many young people do: She started hanging around with the wrong crowd. The next thing her family knew, she was gone. What happened to her? Here is tonight's Out for Justice with Patrick Fraser.
    She was only 19 years old and made a mistake that many young people do: She started hanging around with the wrong crowd. The next thing her family knew, she was gone. What happened to her? Here is tonight's Out for Justice with Patrick Fraser.
  • Alfred McCormick

    Alfred McCormick

    Saturday, July 26 2014 1:00 AM EDT2014-07-26 05:00:26 GMT
    Minister Alfred McCormickMinister Alfred McCormick
    He was a man of God, but early one morning Minister Alfred McCormick was gunned down in the street like a criminal. Maybe because a crook thought he was a crook he was looking for. As Patrick Fraser tells us on tonight's Out For Justice, detectives are determined to find his killer, but they need your help.
    He was a man of God, but early one morning Minister Alfred McCormick was gunned down in the street like a criminal. Maybe because a crook thought he was a crook he was looking for. As Patrick Fraser tells us on tonight's Out For Justice, detectives are determined to find his killer, but they need your help.
  • Qualecia James

    Qualecia James

    Friday, July 11 2014 11:30 PM EDT2014-07-12 03:30:24 GMT
    Qualecia James (right) and her daughterQualecia James (right) and her daughter
    Last March, an afternoon out with friends ended in a barrage of bullets for a pregnant Miami Gardens mother. As Patrick Fraser tells us on tonight's Out for Justice, detectives made an arrest in the case last week, but their work is far from over, and they need your help to bring in the rest of the killers.
    Last March, an afternoon out with friends ended in a barrage of bullets for a pregnant Miami Gardens mother. As Patrick Fraser tells us on tonight's Out for Justice, detectives made an arrest in the case last week, but their work is far from over, and they need your help to bring in the rest of the killers.
  • Carmel on the CaseMore>>

  • Bad Romance: Criminal Casanova Arrested

    Bad Romance: Criminal Casanova Arrested

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 10:54 PM EDT2014-08-20 02:54:12 GMT
    Frank Amanti Frank Amanti
    Two women say they've been used by a seasoned South Florida felon known for breaking hearts and the law. Investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero is on the case.
    Two women say they've been used by a seasoned South Florida felon known for breaking hearts and the law. Investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero is on the case.
  • Paver Projects at Trash Sites Raise Questions

    Paver Projects at Trash Sites Raise Questions

    Tuesday, August 5 2014 10:41 PM EDT2014-08-06 02:41:41 GMT
    It cost Miami-Dade County $768,062 to put these pavers in three of the county's 13 trash sites. It cost Miami-Dade County $768,062 to put these pavers in three of the county's 13 trash sites.
    WSVN -- Miami-Dade County is looking at deep cuts to balance the budget, so why was money spent to make dump sites look better? Investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero is On the Case.
    WSVN -- Miami-Dade County is looking at deep cuts to balance the budget, so why was money spent to make dump sites look better? Investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero is On the Case.
  • Taxing Trouble

    Taxing Trouble

    Thursday, July 31 2014 11:38 PM EDT2014-08-01 03:38:09 GMT
    WSVN -- By this time of year, most of us have paid our taxes. Some of us have even had refunds. But what happens if a tax preparer made a mistake on your return? Here's Carmel Cafiero with a special assignment report on who pays the price for "Taxing Trouble."
    WSVN -- By this time of year, most of us have paid our taxes. Some of us have even had refunds. But what happens if a tax preparer made a mistake on your return? Here's Carmel Cafiero with a special assignment report on who pays the price for "Taxing Trouble."
  • 7News InvestigationMore>>

  • Captain of Controversy

    Captain of Controversy

    Capt. Francesco SchettinoCapt. Francesco Schettino
    In Italy this week, the captain of the Costa Concordia began pre-trial hearings he hopes will convince a judge that the deadly shipwreck was an accident and not a crime. Earlier this year, investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero traveled to Italy for an exclusive interview with Captain Schettino and now has a special assignment report on what he will be telling the court.
    In Italy this week, the captain of the Costa Concordia began pre-trial hearings he hopes will convince a judge that the deadly shipwreck was an accident and not a crime. Earlier this year, investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero traveled to Italy for an exclusive interview with Captain Schettino and now has a special assignment report on what he will be telling the court.
  • Till Death Do Us Part

    Till Death Do Us Part

    Thursday, November 7 2013 11:54 PM EST2013-11-08 04:54:26 GMT
    Alejandra Apraez said her wedding was ruined when the florist she hired did not show up. Alejandra Apraez said her wedding was ruined when the florist she hired did not show up.
    There is very little that will match a bride's wedding day -- a day, months, even years in the planning -- and one South Florida woman's wedding was ruined when the florist didn't show up. Why? A death ... but was there a death? Tonight, investigative reporter Patrick Fraser has the amazing story in a report we call "Till Death Do Us Part."
    There is very little that will match a bride's wedding day -- a day, months, even years in the planning -- and one South Florida woman's wedding was ruined when the florist didn't show up. Why? A death ... but was there a death? Tonight, investigative reporter Patrick Fraser has the amazing story in a report we call "Till Death Do Us Part."
  • Blackwater Fever

    Blackwater Fever

    It was a terrible form of malaria that killed two men. Turning their internal organs black. In south Florida we have almost wiped malaria out but now the concern -- it's spreading around us and could hit us. As...
    It was a terrible form of malaria that killed two men. Turning their internal organs black. In south Florida we have almost wiped malaria out but now the concern -- it's spreading around us and could hit us. As Patrick...
  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Stolen Big Rig recovered thanks to GPS

    Stolen Big Rig recovered thanks to GPS

    Friday, August 22 2014 1:21 PM EDT2014-08-22 17:21:24 GMT
    NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. -- A stolen Big Rig was recovered after the truck's owner tracked the thief's every move thanks to GPS technology.
    NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. -- A stolen Big Rig was recovered after the truck's owner tracked the thief's every move thanks to GPS technology.

  • 1 in custody, 1 at large after boating GPS units stolen

    1 in custody, 1 at large after boating GPS units stolen

    Friday, August 22 2014 1:04 PM EDT2014-08-22 17:04:15 GMT
    KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. -- Authorities have arrested one man while another remains on the loose after GPS units were stolen from boats at a marina, early Friday morning.
    KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. -- Authorities have arrested one man while another remains on the loose after GPS units were stolen from boats at a marina, early Friday morning.
  • 2 charged in dog mauling death of 4-year-old boy

    2 charged in dog mauling death of 4-year-old boy

    Friday, August 22 2014 12:39 PM EDT2014-08-22 16:39:00 GMT
    4-year-old Javon Dade, mauled to death by dogs.4-year-old Javon Dade, mauled to death by dogs.
    SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE -- Authorities said two people have been charged in the death of a 4-year-old boy who was mauled to death by dogs last week.
    SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE -- Authorities said two people have been charged in the death of a 4-year-old boy who was mauled to death by dogs last week.

  • Help Me HowardMore>>

  • Ticketed for Riding Bike

    Ticketed for Riding Bike

    Thursday, August 21 2014 11:05 AM EDT2014-08-21 15:05:28 GMT
    When his license was suspended he needed to get to work, so he bought a bicycle and then he got five tickets from a police officer. Why? It's why he called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
    When his license was suspended he needed to get to work, so he bought a bicycle and then he got five tickets from a police officer. Why? It's why he called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
  • $3.3 Million Lien on House

    $3.3 Million Lien on House

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 11:39 AM EDT2014-08-19 15:39:17 GMT
    The duplex that Victoria Berquist inherited from her parents.The duplex that Victoria Berquist inherited from her parents.
    When her disabled parents died, she inherited their home and a $3.3 million lien they didn't know about. Why? Because they didn't plant some grass and a hedge. Now, is she stuck paying it? It's why she called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
    When her disabled parents died, she inherited their home and a $3.3 million lien they didn't know about. Why? Because they didn't plant some grass and a hedge. Now, is she stuck paying it? It's why she called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
  • Palms Cut Down

    Palms Cut Down

    Wednesday, August 13 2014 10:46 PM EDT2014-08-14 02:46:27 GMT
    You have probably seen it before. FPL sends its crews out to cut the limbs that are in the power lines, but how about this? Cutting down nine palm trees, some in the yard, not near a power line. Can they do this? It's why one South Florida homeowner called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
    You have probably seen it before. FPL sends its crews out to cut the limbs that are in the power lines, but how about this? Cutting down nine palm trees, some in the yard, not near a power line. Can they do this? It's why one South Florida homeowner called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
Powered by WorldNow

WSVN-TV
Sunbeam Television Corp
1401 79th Street Causeway
Miami, FL 33141

Switchboard: (305) 751-6692
Newsroom: (305) 795-2777

Can't find something?
Connect with us here:
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WSVN. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.