L.L. Bean changes lifetime guarantee to 1-year return policy

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FREEPORT, Maine (CNN) L.L. Bean's generous return policy is changing.

The executive chairman Shawn Gorman said Friday that the change is due to a growing number of customers expecting refunds for heavily worn products used over many years. Gorman says customers were seeking refunds for products that have been purchased through third parties, such as at yard sales. The company will now accept returns for any reason only for one year with proof of purchase. It also will continue to replace products for manufacturing defects beyond that.

The previous lifetime guarantee, which enabled customers to return products years -- or even decades -- after purchase, has long been a selling point for the company.