UPDATE: Case dismissed.
In 2012, Benjamin Pershouse of Woburn bought a pair of slippers from L.L. Bean. But after a few years of use, "the rubber soles of the slippers began to flake off in large chunks." You can only imagine his shock when he tried to take advantage of the chain's famous lifetime, no questions asked guarantee on March 8 of this year, only to have a manager at the Burlington store turn up her nose and refuse to give him a new pair.
So, naturally, Pershouse filed a federal lawsuit against L.L. Bean over its February announcement that it was changing its lifetime guarantee to a more limited one-year guarantee that, among other things, requires customers to hold onto their original receipts. It later updated that to only apply to products purchased after the announcement, but Pershouse says the store has been hiding that and trying to make people like him feel like chumps.
And, of course, his lawyer, who specializes in class-action lawsuits, wants a judge to make Pershouse lead plaintiff in a national lawsuit to recover at least $25 per purchased item, plus up to treble damages and costs.
The L.L. Bean Guarantee, which would allow him to return the slippers at any time if he was not completely satisfied, was part of the basis of Plaintiff’s bargain with L.L. Bean. Given L.L. Bean’s sudden reversal of its long-standing Guarantee, however, Mr. Pershouse has been injured and has been deprived of the benefit that formed a basis of the bargain between him and L.L. Bean. ...
Plaintiff and the members of the Classes did not receive that which was promised and represented to them. Unbeknownst to Plaintiff and the other Class members, rather than purchasing products accompanied by a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee, they were purchasing products that would become subject to an exceptionally limited warranty, for which proof of purchase was required. Accordingly, because Plaintiff and the other Class members did not receive the benefit of the bargain, Plaintiff and the Class members overpaid for the products they purchased.
Complete Pershouse complaint (1.6M PDF).