Eyeglass Rule

The Eyeglass Rule, implemented in 1978 and enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), requires doctors to provide patients with their prescription immediately after their exam, “even if the patient does not request it.” It also prohibits prescribers from:

  • Requiring patients to buy eyeglasses to receive their prescription
  • Forcing patients to sign a waiver
  • Placing a liability waiver on the prescription
  • Requiring patients to pay an additional fee to receive their prescription
  • Refusing to perform an eye exam unless a patient buys glasses, contact lenses or other ophthalmic goods

The FTC recently announced that it will be recommencing the review process of the Eyeglass Rule. The next step in the process is for the Commission to publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. FTC has indicated they anticipate releasing the Proposed Rule in Summer/Early Fall. 

As is typical for the Proposed Rule process, a comment period would follow the release of the Proposed Rule. The comment period would likely be 60 days. FTC would then consider comments and release a Final Rule.