Dear Sir If the modern cleaner thought the need to properly inspect articles on receipt in order to avoid spurious claims was a recent innovation, then the following extract taken from an article written 63 years ago should be be of interest.

“Lengthy unconditional releases to be signed by customers and “not responsible” signs are rapidly disappearing from the better cleaning plants. In their place appear the words “bonded and guaranteed.” There is an important psychological effect in the words “bonded and guaranteed” as contrasted with the negative appeal of the “not responsible” notices. Drycleaning plants taking the responsibility of a guarantee and working with it for the past two or three years have reported fewer claims than before. Possibly they are taking more care and time in the initial inspection of garments; but that is as it should be.

Many drycleaners spend a considerable amount of money over a year in settling claims. Some of these are paid purely as a matter of policy. Others are paid, although the cleaner is not responsible, but lacks information concerning the condition of the article when received. This condition exists and always will, even if the front office is papered with large red “not responsible” signs and if invoices are printed profusely with the same words. Careful office records and co-operation among credit departments of cleaning plants curtail the activities of the “professional claimers” who are out to take every advantage of merchants. The co-operation between merchants, manufacturers and cleaners is daily reducing the risks and hazards of handling unserviceable merchandise.” Drycleaning technology has certainly advanced in the past 63 years, but the gist of this article suggests that some aspects of the cleaning trade never really change!