A dry cleaner provides a service and must follow rules set out in consumer law.
What the law says
A dry cleaner provides you with a service so under The Consumer Rights Act 2015 they must clean items with reasonable care and skill and within a reasonable time.
If your dry cleaner loses your item, or it is damaged because they have been careless or negligent, you should be compensated for its value. You may not always get the full replacement value if you have had the item for some time or if it was quite worn or in poor condition to begin with.
Do not be put off complaining by notices such as “All items cleaned at owner’s risk”. If the dry cleaner thinks there might be a problem with dry cleaning an item they should warn you in advance so you can decide if you want to go ahead.
How to complain
If you are unhappy with the service you have received and you want advice on your rights before you complain to the dry cleaner, you can contact Consumerline on 0300 123 6262. You should then complain to the manager or supervisor of the shop. If the dry cleaner will not help, and it is a member of a chain, then you should contact the Customer Services Manager at the chain’s head office.
Some dry cleaners are members of a trade association such as the Textile Services Association Ltd. If your dry cleaner is a member, the trade association may be able to offer some help and advice, or help resolve a dispute.
If you are still unable to resolve your complaint you may have to consider taking your case to the Small Claims Court. See our Disputes section. Talk to Consumerline on 0300 123 6262 or your local advice as they can advise you how to apply. For amounts over £3,000 you should speak to a solicitor.