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OFF BEAT: Jilted wife sues Nieman Marcus over guilt-gift refunds


Beware of husbands bearing overly lavish gifts.

That’s the hard lesson learned by a wife who allegedly learned her husband, who had given her some $1.4 million worth of merchandise from luxury retailer Neiman Marcus, was simultaneously conducting an affair with the Dallas store’s personal shopper.

Patricia Walker, who has since divorced her husband, Robert Tennison, said in a lawsuit she was recovering from an automobile accident and was bedridden for three years during the period her husband gave her the gifts—the same time he was conducting an affair with personal shopper Favi Lo.

Ms. Walker had spent a mere $100,000 a year at the store before her accident, according to news reports.

She sued Neiman Marcus after the store refused to give her refunds on the merchandise, which includes jewelry, crystal sculpture and $285 pajamas.

“The real villain in this case is Neiman Marcus,” said her attorney, Mark Ticer. “After learning of this affair they decided they weren’t going to do anything about it.”

Mr. Ticer said Ms. Lo, who earned commissions on the merchandise she sold Mr. Tennison, continues in her job at the retailer.

“It’s a sad story about breach of trust and profits over people,” Mr. Ticer said. “And Neiman Marcus isn’t taking responsibility.”

According to the news reports, the chain’s retail policy says it “will gladly accept your timely return of unworn, unwashed or defective merchandise.”

Unfortunately for Ms. Walker, there’s apparently no mention in the policy of refunds on gifts given by philandering husbands.