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NORTH TEXAS (CBS 11 NEWS) – You’ve survived shopping season and now it’s time for the returns. It can be a daunting task, especially since there’s no standard return policy that all stores follow.

When it comes to returns—some retailers hit it out of ballpark and some have restrictions buried in fine print.

Experienced shoppers have their favorites. Kate Padilla of Dallas likes Nordstrom’s return policy.
“I find their customer service is always top notch,” she said.

And many agree.

According to moneytalksnews.com, Nordstrom’s policy is a gold standard in returns. They will take worn clothing and shoes — even if you don’t have a receipt. They’ll even pay return postage for mailed returns.

Shoppers find Macy’s return policies to be pretty good as well. The store has no time limit on returns, but the gift can’t be exchanged for cash. Instead, you can get a store credit.

L.L. Bean has a 100-percent satisfaction guarantee and will accept returns no matter how long it’s been. But, they will charge return shipping for mail orders.

Jeanette Kopko, of the Better Business Bureau in Dallas, says stores don’t have to offer return service. “Keep in mind the retailer does not have to offer a return and exchange policy. This is what they do as part of consumer service.”

American Apparel won’t accept returns on items purchased on sale. And, items purchased online can only be returned for a store credit.

Barnes & Noble on the other hand just gives customers 14 days to make returns. Best Buy has a 15-day return policy. However both stores have made exceptions for the holiday.

Kopko says little things can help make the experience less stressful. Her advice: save receipts and bring it in with your item. “Return the gift promptly if you don’t like it, and bring it back in good condition.”

Kopko also reminds that customers should always speak to the manager if there’s a problem.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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