Returned item: Seller claims courier smashed it



I recieved a faulty item.


Requested a return (within 7 days, so under DSR).


I organized my own courier to return the item to them.


They are now telling me the item has ‘dents’ and is ‘smashed’ and was damaged in transit (this seems unlikely and I used their original packaging), + the item was already damaged and had cracks though it wasn’t ‘smashed’ (it was a laptop screen).


I don’t think the item is insured by the courier I used fully for the amount.


But why should the latter courier company I used, pay the full amount for an item that was already susceptible to further defects considering it was cracked (either by the original courier, or the seller)?


I’m almost certain the item was ‘not’ damaged in transit, and the damage they are referring to is just an exaggerated version of the damage the item already had (though they havn’t shown me pictures yet).


Should I have paid extra to insure the already faulty/damaged item?


Would I win a case if it was escalated?


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