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Policy change and business litigation: The L.L. Bean situation

Business owners in Wisconsin and elsewhere should be free to change company policies if their current policies are hurting their bottom line. This is something clothing retailer L.L. Bean recently did. Now, the company finds itself facing business litigation due to consumers being unhappy about the change.

According to a recent news report, a legal claim was filed against L.L. Bean by a loyal customer who is upset that the company has done away with its lifetime warranty. The plaintiff in this case says the company has harmed its consumers and is failing to live up to the promises made to those who bought products because of lifetime warranty offerings. L.L. Bean has yet to respond to the complaint.

Why did they end the lifetime warranty? It all came down to money. The warranty is something the company has offered for decades. However, abuse of the policy has cost L.L. Bean millions over the years. Over the last five years, L.L. Bean claims to have lost upward of $250 million in warranty claims -- many of them resulting from customers seeking to use the policy as a free replacement program.

When a policy is hurting a business, do consumer wishes and past promises outweigh a company's right to make changes that will benefit the business' bottom line? The answer to that question may be different in every case. Company owners in Wisconsin can seek assistance when changing company policies in order to ensure the changes are implemented in a legally appropriate manner. If business litigation arises due to the adjustment, help dealing with the matter in the best possible way can also be provided.

Source: msn.com, "L.L. Bean sued for ditching its beloved lifetime warranty", Kim Bhasin and Polly Mosendz, Feb. 14, 2018

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