Q. I took a United flight from Shanghai to San Francisco and checked luggage, but when I arrived at home, I found that my pearl necklaces that were put in the luggage were stolen. I contacted United, but got no response from them. What should I do? May I ask for compensation from the airline?

A. Valuables are stolen from checked bags often, and that's why airlines take no responsibility for them. "Valuables" can be anything from electronics, important business papers, jewelry, or anything of high or irreplaceable value. You should never put them in your checked luggage. I seriously doubt that United will do anything for you, but you should make a report to the police and the TSA. It's possible that your homeowners insurance will cover you.

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