I won't be grading with PSA anymore

Today I received an email.

Where to begin. Well, this has been happening quite commonly here lately. We’ve seen way too many instances of this on E4 alone (in addition to the amount of times they’ve sent back cards damaged without saying anything i.e. top right corner examples); I can only logically assume this has happened to many others not on forums. This is alone already grossly incompetent and unacceptable in the first place. It destroys any trust and reliability you can have in them.

I responded saying it would be more appropriate a gesture of apology if they awarded the declared value of $199. I knew this would go nowhere. But it’s the principle. They conveniently go with declared value before and after encapsulation in so many cases we’ve seen, even if the card is worth more when graded. But when it is worth less, they’ll go with that. The market value only reflects the past 2 sales, not the ~20-30% higher previous ones, nor does it consider the fact that you can’t obtain it now if you wanted to, considering current prices and availability. Nor does it consider sales tax, nor does it consider the most important thing. Any sentimental value of the card, the time/energy investment in obtaining it, etc. They just don’t care.

Then for me personally, this comes after the last couple submissions and the frustration I have with my experience of late with grading vs buying and the gross discrepancy between these two. Sending pack fresh vintage eng cards in and getting 8’s and 7’s, buying 9’s and seeing significant wear and damage, etc. And now, I find it ironic, that when this card–submitted not for the second, but for the third time–gets an appropriate grade, it is damaged by PSA. This is not just a pack fresh card, but one that is 10 worthy. To get an 8 twice, along with the twenty+ other cards being 7/8 as well, is laughably ludicrous. And I was already of the disposition that it isn’t worth it anymore. Just try to ask for pictures from the few sellers that are willing to do so, to verify condition, on the 9’s left to buy to achieve my goals. 'Cause buying just any 9 ain’t worth it. They are always worse (way worse) than the ones I’m submitting.

This didn’t used to happen. In the past they’ve usually been pretty close to accurate grades, they seldom damaged cards. Maybe tcg’s being graded in Jersey has created a big discrepancy. Who knows. And really this is just for english. Japanese still is being graded easily and generously to boot. I get JP cards with whitening and wear and always surprised by the overgrading.

Maybe just maybe this card getting the 9 is a sign that I had fortune with other regrades, as some sort of consolation on my last order. After all, it would be even more bemusing if this got the 9 and the others in the same condition didn’t. But I don’t have any confidence in that happening with the track record at hand. Fingers crossed anyway.

Just considering everything they do to people, the not-first-in-first-out, the joke of the backlog a couple years ago, the mafia-esque tendencies they have, the incompetence in grading, the absent communication, and now this… It’s just not worth it anymore. I’m not a brand loyal person. I don’t collect a few PSA slabs because PSA is on there. I collect them because I want a card inside of some nicely-presented plastic with an acknowledgement that it is mint by a party other than myself. A party that used to be reputable, still is by the public, but to me, which has always been dubious and case by case, just is less than ever before. What is important here to me is the cards. I’m not going to “never look at PSA slabs the same way ever again” or anything like that. My verification of the grade has always been paramount and trumped theirs anyway. This just changes my grading with them personally. Others can take that risk and waste money if they are submitting for their collections. Grading is so ridiculously profitable for flippers that it’s always worth it to them. This is coming from a collector of the cards they are submitting. This might only resonate with similar folks.

There is nothing this post is meant to do other than to air my grievances to people I know that would be interested to know in another data point of PSA damaging cards. I’m just angry. I’ve had enough. I guess I should be grateful it was only one, and (hopefully) none of my shadowless which immediately follow this card in the order.

edit: update:


Sorry that this happened to you, Brendan. Not much to say, but that this sucks.


At least they told you and owned up to it, meanwhile I had to live with almost the same situation of a potential 9 getting a 4. They did not give me any options whatsoever. I think you are just going to have to take the L on this one and grade with CGC or BGS.

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You should definitely push for a payout. The voucher is typically their general move, but I would push for a payout, especially if you don’t grade that often. I would emphasize that if you decide to pursue it further.


So sorry to hear this. Misgrades are one thing, but damaging cards feels unacceptable to me. What a shitty thing to happen :frowning:


It happens a lot too.

In my neck of the woods, it seems people only grade to flip anyway, so to them it’ll just be the cost of doing business.

I wouldn’t send any card across the sea to grade.

This is such a terrible customer experience. If they hadn’t damaged the card, you’d have a mint graded copy of the card. Like you said, you can’t go out and buy the card in this condition easily, and you no longer have the ability to hold it to sell at a higher price in the future. At minimum PSA should offer a guarantee where they compensate double or triple a card’s value in the case PSA damages the card. Sorry this happened to you.


I hadn’t even typed this post up until I’ve gone back and forth with them several times. It ended at a point where I told them I’m done with them and that if a measly $50-100 is worth losing a customer for life then so be it. I was starting to sound pretty aggressive to the agent. He didn’t even answer me the last time I wrote back.

The whole “thanks for your understanding” and


just sickens me. I’m done trying. “Keep my friggin’ $100 you trash.” That’s the way I see it. Greedy, slimy. They say, “don’t worry, your cards are safe and secure with us, we care about collectors”. Like, no, they aren’t. No, you don’t. And you very clearly aren’t taking a spec of these consistent, grave mistakes seriously at all. And with paying out the bare minimum you are both disrespecting customers and showing them clear evidence that you couldn’t care any less. Whereas if they took it seriously, they’d pay out full value, lose more money, and get management on that shit right away. This is how competent, proud, honest people do business. The opposite is the case here, and has been for a long time with PSA.

But thanks for the comment anyway man. I appreciate it. I’ve read all about it throughout the years. Some people get better resolution after going Karen. I tried several times, and I’m not about to waste my time with them further since I am done with them and they are irredeemable to me to submit any further.


This in indeed terrible customer service on their part. They should be going above and beyond for people who’s cards they damage. And judging by the fact they seem to be damaging a lot more cards lately it seems like they may be resting on their laurels of success. I just sent a bunch of cards to PSA and traditionally am a fan of their slabs and grading scale and general reliability. But I have taken issue with some of their grades and some things seem really inconsistent. I genuinely hope other companies like CGC do really well and give PSA a run for their money. Competition is good for the market and pushes companies to have better service.
Maybe I should send my next submission to CGC and see how that goes?


Yes regarding your perspective on the comment.

Not sure if this is rhetorical or not, but I’m not the right person to ask if it isn’t. I’ve been pretty outspoken about how much I dislike cgc. But that doesn’t matter in this thread and you do whatever pleases you and your collection. I just know for me submitting myself is a thing of the past as of today. I will judge for myself the condition of any remaining 9’s I want to purchase and do so, then be happy with a modest complete collection of slabs. And despite this, based on how the remainder of the order (shadowless cards) comes back, that could be the completion of the last general goal besides some slows anyway. Like I said above, I’ve already been so outraged by them that I was already leaning towards this anyway. This just sealed the deal.


After new management, the company has gone to shit.

I have been promoting to #protestgradingpsa as there is clearly a disadvantage to a majority of paying and loyal grading service clients they had. During the tougher economic times, psa heavily focuses on turn and burn mentality); trying squeezing higher then reasonable prices for their grading services and just setting a less than admirable presence. Dubious.

Honestly, they are a detriment to pokemon as a collectible as of current. As of their current disgusting display of inconsideration to their core service members for the unaware, infrequent collector will have it’s limitations. They are going to feel the hurt as their favoritism is borderline devious (considering the amount of e-4 dedicated folks that have gotten wrecked as of recent experiences, mine so/so as well but I’m mad too)

I’m actually considering grading with CGC now. PSA went corporate without the premium service, they are losing so much respect.

I may buy a few graded cards, but their graders are not really worth my time.

In short: Forget about PSA. Their workforce is currently garbage mentality and are gasping for the fumes of their previous company prior to Nate Turner’s acquisition.

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Man what a pain, really feel for you. Keep us updated on the rest of the cards on you’ve submitted, little consolation but hopefully it’s just the one card that’s been damaged.

Lol a company charging $15-19/card that does not reward ‘small businesses and card shops that chose to pay for their overpriced grading services’ during these times is a villain. This PSAnomics is TERRIBLE.

PSA is pretty much telling you guys F U, I can’t believe you still grade with us.

Is it really worth it guys? Someone argue with me PSA is their savior. Pls. ‘they’re priced right, have plenty of customers’. You are just okaying their ATROCIOUS behavior.

I’m with the group that is currently ‘F.orgetaout PSA’ , I’m glad most of my collection was acquired before their company/graders went to shit.

I hope CGC can one day be on par with PSA in terms of popularity for Pokemon cards.


This sort of possibility, however slim, is exactly what scares me out of sending in my special cards for certification. :frowning:


Sorry to hear. Even though I personally haven’t had a card damaged like that by PSA, I have seen many people talk about a negative experience with PSA.

Even though I’ll still use PSA as my main grading company, just yesterday I sent my first submission to CGC. I’m hoping the grades come back fair.

I realize CGC will never be number one for Pokémon, but I can see them being or already being #2 in Pokémon card grading.

To me, BGS only has the black label that makes them standout. Other than the black label, I’d use CGC over BGS.


CGC has a sweet black label now, although I know Beckett is probably the harshest when it comes to grading.


As much as I want to dislike CGC for changing the label and making easy 10s out of 9.5s, I can’t get away from the fact that the new label looks good, the cost is better and the turnaround time is quick. If I have a higher valued card that will grade higher then I will go with PSA or BGS. That’s just me.


Just to wet your appetite @dblast
CGC slabs look great and rn when prices are somewhat low it’s a great time to get genuinely top tier cards!


This is the way