FILE - In this March 16, 2016, file photo, shoppers exit the L.L. Bean retail store in Freeport, Maine. L.L. Bean is tightening its generous return policy by imposing a one-year limit on most returns to reduce abuse and fraud. Executives say returns of severely worn items have doubled over five years. Under the new policy announced Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, the company will accept returns for one year with a proof of purchase and will continue to replace products for manufacturing defects beyond that. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)
Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
Less than a week since the new return policy was announced, boot maker L.L. Bean is now being taken to court over the change.
Victor Bondi filed suit in Chicago Monday, claiming that the reason he bought L.L. Bean products was because of the company’s satisfaction guarantee, The Bangor Daily News reported.
Bondi shared two images from catalog covers that stated, “100% Satisfaction Guarantee. No Conditions. No End Date.”
The lawsuit said that Bondi, and other members of the class action, bought items with that warranty and that “When L.L. Bean announced those terms would be dishonored, (the) plaintiff and the other class members were deprived of their benefit of the bargain,” The Daily News reported.
Bondi is asking that the company be ordered to honor the lifetime warranty for any products purchased before the Feb. 9 change and to recover damages for all Illinois residents who bought items from L.L. Bean before the new policy, The Chicago Tribune reported.
Company spokeswoman Carolyn Beem told the Tribune that the suit misrepresents the new policy.
“L.L. Bean products bought prior to Feb. 9, 2018, will not be subject to the new one-year restriction. Proof of purchase will continue to be required. That is what we have consistently told customers since the new policy was announced last Friday,” Beem said in an emailed statement to the Tribune.
The change in policy came after company officials said it lost $250 million over five years on items that were “destroy quality” that had been returned.