Skip to main content

The FTC is considering proposed changes to the Eyeglass Rule and has announced a May 18, 2023, public workshop, A Clear Look at the Eyeglass Rule. If you have clients in the industry – or if you’re interested in consumers’ rights when shopping for glasses – you’ll want to read the Federal Register Notice to see how the issues are framed.

The Ophthalmic Practice Rules – most people know it as the Eyeglass Rule – require ophthalmologists and optometrists to provide patients with a copy of their prescription immediately after the completion of an eye exam. Prescribers can’t require that patients buy eyeglasses, pay an additional fee, or sign a waiver or release as a condition of getting their prescription. In addition, the Rule requires that prescribers give patients a copy of their prescription even if the patient doesn’t ask for it and even if their prescription hasn’t changed.

In December 2022, the FTC proposed revisions to the Eyeglass Rule. One notable amendment would require prescribers to ask patients to sign an acknowledgement confirming they have received their prescription. Prescribers would need to retain that confirmation for three years. The thinking behind the proposal is that it would encourage prescribers to honor the Rule, remind patients of their rights, and provide prescribers with a way to verify compliance. Other proposed changes would allow prescribers, with a patient’s verifiable affirmative consent, to provide a digital (not paper) copy of the prescription and would clarify that a patient’s proof of insurance coverage will be deemed to be a payment for the purpose of determining when the prescriber must provide the prescription. One other proposal: changing the term “eye examination” to “refractive eye examination” throughout the Rule.

A Clear Look at the Eyeglass Rule will continue the conversation at a half-day event scheduled for 9:00 to 1:00 pm ET on May 18th in the FTC’s Constitution Center conference room. Can’t make it to DC that day? Watch the webcast live from a link we’ll post that morning. We’ll announce the agenda soon, but the discussion will likely focus on the proposed prescription release confirmation requirement for eyeglass prescriptions, consumers’ and prescribers’ experiences with how a similar requirement for contact lens prescriptions is working, other proposed changes to the rule, and issues raised in public comments filed in response to the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

The FTC is accepting requests to participate as a panelist. If you’re interested, email us at by April 7, 2023, following the procedure in today’s Federal Register Notice. In addition, we’re leaving the public record open until June 20, 2023, if you want to file a written comment.

FTC Eyeglass Rule workshop 2023

It is your choice whether to submit a comment. If you do, you must create a user name, or we will not post your comment. The Federal Trade Commission Act authorizes this information collection for purposes of managing online comments. Comments and user names are part of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) public records system, and user names also are part of the FTC’s computer user records system. We may routinely use these records as described in the FTC’s Privacy Act system notices. For more information on how the FTC handles information that we collect, please read our privacy policy.

The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

  • We won’t post off-topic comments, repeated identical comments, or comments that include sales pitches or promotions.
  • We won’t post comments that include vulgar messages, personal attacks by name, or offensive terms that target specific people or groups.
  • We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
  • We won’t post comments that include personal information, like Social Security numbers, account numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. To file a detailed report about a scam, go to

We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.