L.L. Bean Drops Lifetime Return Policy After Jerks Abuse It

ll bean return policy
Wikimedia Commons
Bad news for fans of the increasingly-rare lifetime return policy: clothing and outdoor retailer L.L. Bean announced today that it has revised its lax return policy, leaving behind their famously generous guarantee after over 100 years. According to a letter to customers from L.L. Bean Executive Chairman Shawn O. Gorman, the decision comes after “a small, but growing number of customers has been interpreting [the] guarantee well beyond its original intent” by using it to return “heavily worn products” and to seek refunds for “products that have been purchased through third parties, such as yard sales.”

It seems that the company’s former return policy – which allowed customers to return items without proof of purchase and for decades after buying – has become a liability in recent years. And how could it not be when there are monsters running around out there buying old L.L. Bean for pennies on the dollar and then returning them for full price. According to a statement to the Associated Press from CEO Steve Smith, the increase in people abusing the policy is “not sustainable from a business perspective. It’s not reasonable. And it’s not fair to our customers.”

The company hasn’t banned returns entirely though – the new policy still allows customers up to a full year to return products with proof of purchase. Their announcement also assures that after one year, the retailer will “work with…customers to reach a fair solution if a product is defective in any way.” The letter also reinforced their commitment to “quality service, trust, and getting people outdoors,” and assures customers that the company will “continue to honor one of the best guarantees in retail, with no impact for the vast majority of…customers.”

While it’s sad to see such a long-standing policy change, responses to the announcement on L.L. Bean’s Facebook page suggest that customers are understanding about the reasoning, with many people directing their anger at people whose abuse of the policy forced its change rather than at the company itself.

You can still find lots of products with lifetime warranties (many made right here in America), however. Get those goods here.

Food & Drink

Learn All About Irish Whiskey with From Barley to Blarney

From Barley to Blarney is a paean to all things Irish whiskey from the proprietors of The Dead Rabbit.

A Review of the Floyd Sofa, a Minimalist’s Perfect Perch

The Manual received a sample of the Floyd Couch and we tested it by putting it together and binging Netflix for nearly two weeks.

7 Fantastic Beach Reads for Your Next Vacation

From a harrowing tale of survival at sea to a classic by Steinbeck, we've got all the best beach reads in one place.
Fashion & Style

Support Our National Parks By Stunting a Parks Project X Jungmaven Hemp Tee

The tees in the collaboration are the perfect purchase for someone who wants to support the National Parks while also wearing something that would work perfectly on a hike in them.
Fashion & Style

Summer Ahoy! Southern Tide and Reyn Spooner Team Up for Tropical Collection

The line includes T-shirts, Southern Tide’s signature polos, Reyn Spooner's famous Aloha shirts, shorts, and swimwear.
Fashion & Style

Mido Releases 3 Watches for Under $1,000 in the Multifort Patrimony Line

For the 85th anniversary of the Mido Multifort collection, the brand is releasing these relatively inexpensive timepieces.
Fashion & Style

Relive the ’90s with the Translucent G-Shock Skeleton Series

It's called the Skeleton Series because you can see its inner workings ... like a skeleton. Get it?
Fashion & Style

Banana Republic Drops Core Temp Collection with NFL Quarterback Jared Goff

Truth be told, the collection’s biggest fan might be Goff himself.
Fashion & Style

The Campiest and Most Stylish Menswear Outfits Served at the 2019 Met Gala

The 2019 Met Gala was one night where men could — and should — throw caution to the wind and indulge in the sort of sartorial splendor worthy of a Lewis Carroll novel. 

When You’ve Got a Job to Do, You Need a Pair of the Best Work Boots for Men

Each pair will keep your feet safe when you drop a brick, step on a broken window pane, or send sparks showering down from that angle grinder you're working.
Fashion & Style

The DSPTCH X Descente Collection is Packable Clothing Done Right

Packable clothing is integral to ultralight backpacking, for auto-related weather emergencies or strandings, or even just so you're always ready for the next big adventure.
Fashion & Style

Our Top Gear and Apparel Picks from Public Rec’s Leisurewear Lineup

Public Rec combines the soft, comfortable, performance fabrics of athleisure wear with the classic shape and styling of regular clothing.
Fashion & Style

5 Great Dive Watches to Wear While You Snorkel in the Sun

You probably won't need these for any actual diving, but that's not really the point.
Fashion & Style

The Best Jeans for Men to Wear in Spring and Summer 2019

When things get a bit warmer, pair these with classic white T-shirts and tank tops, linen button-up, or no shirt at all once that summer tan has finally kicked in.