Deposit Refunds

  • Stefan
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Replied by Stefan on topic £500 Deposit

Posted 18 May 2021 16:07 #111
Hi Sasha

My story, I had a consultation at optical express St. John street Manchester on the 26th April 2021. The receptionist told me at the time of booking that because of my age I would probably need lens replacement, so when the optometrist said I could have laser treatment I was over the moon.
I was given a information pack and a couple of dates when the surgery could be done.
I went home and thought about it and a few days later on the 6th May I called to book my surgery and pay the deposit of £500 over the phone.
Now once I had paid my deposit I had this overwhelming feeling like I was one a train that I could not get off, or lose my deposit.
I then received an email informing me of my telephone clinical discussion would be on the 12th May.
Lucky an hour before the call I found your website.
So glad i did.
The person who spoke to me was optometrist (sorry I forgot her name) not a surgeon by the way, the call lasted four minutes.
I told them I was a bit reluctant after doing more research into the possible outcomes of the surgery, none that were told to me on the day of the consultation.
I was told the optometrist who saw me on the day and the branch manager will call me back.
I was never told who would be my surgeon on the day and haven’t spoken to one.
The next day the branch manager did call me back and I explained that I had read that a couple of the surgeons working for Optical Express had legal claims against them and I just could not risk it.
She said no problem my deposit will be refunded (amount not specified) with 28 days.
I was never informed of any T&Cs at the time or since.
What ever advice you can give me from this point will mean the most to me.
I don’t think I would’ve been able to cope if things went bad.
So I just want to thank you once again. ❤️
I know you must get a lot of emails. You are a Bobby dazzler!
admin: Please send your phone number :kiss:
Last Edit:18 May 2021 18:10 by Stefan
  • Lucy Bottomley

Replied by Lucy Bottomley on topic Deposit refund refused

Posted 08 May 2021 11:49 #112
Ten years ago I had lasik surgery in both eyes - followed by a lasek ‘enhancement'. I had good vision afterwards but since then it deteriorated to -0.25 in my left eye and -0.75 in my right. Not too bad, but I thought I would see if it was safe to have further surgery and find out what the risks were.

When I attended Optical Express Milton Keynes store in January 2021, the optometrist told me that my right eye would be worth operating on, but claimed that the best and only way to be safe would be to have the most expensive laser treatment costing approximately £3000 - for one eye!

I was pressured to leave a deposit that day - but with no explanation or discussion about their refund policy. I trusted that because it was a medical procedure there would be no risk about getting my money back should I not proceed.

I had gone for the appointment with my twin sister, who has slightly worse vision than me and was recommended to have surgery in both eyes. I did not schedule a surgery date due to work commitments, but my sister did.

I later had a 5 minute phone call from a woman who I have since been told is a ‘clinician’. All she did was check the information I had already provided and confirm that no date had been booked. There was NO discussion about refund timelines.

I drove my sister for her surgery in Northampton, but the surgeon seemed surprised that a third surgery for a low prescription had been recommended. He told her the risks and my sister asked him ‘WOULD YOU DO THIS?’ He replied emphatically ‘NO’. My sister doesn’t know which surgeon she spoke to, but she didn't go ahead and her deposit was refunded in full.

I spoke to the clinic the next day and told them based on this information I wanted to cancel. A few days later the optometrist called me and said she had spoken to the surgeon who said that I could have the cheaper procedure if I had concerns. I said if the surgeon didn’t think the risk was worth it for my sister, then surely that’s the same for me? I also pointed out my concerns about the risks I had since discovered were possible with a third laser operation - something that was not disclosed at our January consultations.

I cancelled the same day, beginning of March, and was told they they would refund my deposit, but hearing nothing from them I started chasing my refund on March 20th. Told it would be 28 days I chased this again after no contact and then they said 28 WORKING days. I kept chasing as I had no confirmation in writing, and each time I was told I would be refunded.

I called again after the 28 working days on 4th May and was told that I would be refunded and someone would call me back.

No call, so I tried again on 7th May, but was then told that the deposit would be forfeited as I had not cancelled two days after a ‘clinician' phone call!

I have argued that I hadn’t even scheduled a surgery date, and much more - but my refund was categorically refused. I have made a complaint as this seems to be horrendous business practice and it seems the ‘sellers’ were clearly happy to put me at risk rather than lose a sale and now will not even give me my deposit back. This seems both unethical and immoral and illegal. Can you help?
admin: Please send your phone number to sasha@opticalexpressruinedmylife.co.uk
This is another complaint that needs to go to the GOC, as I will explain when we speak
Last Edit:09 May 2021 19:44 by Lucy Bottomley
  • Mohammed Rahman

Replied by Mohammed Rahman on topic Keeping my money

Posted 22 Apr 2021 07:19 #113
I was due to have lens replacement surgery on the 24th of this month at the Optical Express in Birmingham and need some advice.
I went for an appointment on the 11th April and was told I was good to have lens replacement and asked to pay £500 to book a surgery date.
I didn't know the name of the surgeon but on 12th April I was phoned by a man named Usman who said it was the protocol for him to to ask me some questions before I had surgery.
I became very concerned as I saw some very negative reviews reporting problems with lens replacement and went to Optical Express on the 18th April and had a face to face discussion with an optometrist. She told me if I was worried she would arrange for me to speak with the surgeon Dr Venter.
The surgeon phoned me today and told me that there are risks of glare and haloes with these lens but it’s only about 3 in 1000. I was still concerned and I phoned to cancel the surgery. They put me through to a specialist who told me not to worry because they said there was a very minimum chance of me getting glare with multifocal lenses but if I did the y could be replaced with something else. I asked Usman and Dr Venter if you can go blind and they said there was a small chance this could happen.
I wasn’t told any of this when they took my £500 and I have now cancelled but they told me they are keeping £150.
I am not happy with this and wnat all my money back. Please can you help me

Thank you
Kind regards
Mohammed Rahman
admin: Please send your phone number to sasha@opticalexpressruinedmylife.co.uk
The surgeon should have consented you, not Usman, and Dr Jan Venter knows this! Yet another complaint for the GOC, as I will explain when we speak
Last Edit:22 Apr 2021 07:29 by Mohammed Rahman
  • TerryL
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Replied by TerryL on topic Deposit Refunded!

Posted 13 Apr 2021 14:54 #114
Finally got my full refund back from Optical Express! Thank you Sasha, couldn't have done it without your help.
Keep up the great work wonder woman :)
Last Edit:13 Apr 2021 15:09 by TerryL
  • Angela Owens

Replied by Angela Owens on topic Deposit refund success!

Posted 09 Apr 2021 14:13 #115
Received refund from Optical Express without any hassle thanks the help and support Sasha provided , without whch this may not have been achievable.
Thank you so much Sasha, you truly are amazing and I have avoided making the biggest mistake of my life.
Thankfully I am keeping the currently not so bad lenses I was given at birth and avoided potential damage to my very precious eyesight!
Last Edit:09 Apr 2021 16:22 by Angela Owens
  • Malgorzata
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Replied by Malgorzata on topic Deposit Refunded!

Posted 08 Apr 2021 17:03 #116
Hi Sasha! Thank you very much for all your help with the deposit and for addressing OE's misleading numbers on Kazmi's satisfied patients! I got my full deposit back within a week of contacting you, thank you. No questions were asked, even though I was ready to argue my case. Keep up the good work! I'll be following your progress.
Last Edit:08 Apr 2021 17:14 by Malgorzata
  • TerryL
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Replied by TerryL on topic Half my deposit kept!

Posted 31 Mar 2021 18:17 #117
We had a first appointment at the Optical Express St Albans branch on Sept 7th 2020 at 9.40am. The appointment was for my girlfriend Agnieszka (Aga).

We were seen by two 'technicians', Sandra Martin & Pardeep (she never gave her surname). Aga explained she was considering laser eye surgery to help her see things closer but both women told us this wasn't possible as Laser eye surgery only corrected short sightedness (for distance), and if she wanted treatment Aga would have to go for Lens Replacement surgery. That was nearly double the cost.

Aga then went to another room for her eyes to be tested by, I presume, an optometrist. After these tests were concluded, she was asked to sign an electronic screen to say she had been seen by the optometrist who confirmed she needed lens replacement, not laser surgery.

We were put back in the room with Sandra & Pardeep and the optometrist confirmed what she had told us and left. Sandra & Pardeep then tried to convince us how good the treatment was. Sandra had the treatment done herself with Optical Express and the dangers were minimal and not worth worrying about we were told. If there were any problems Optical Express would take care of her apparently.

We went away to think about it.

Thursday October 15th Aga decided she wanted to go ahead with the treatment, so I paid a £500 deposit over the phone to Sandra at around 5.00pm and booked an appointment with the surgeon for the following week.

Over the weekend I stumbled across a story on the internet about court cases involving Optical Express so we decided we would cancel the treatment with them.

The branch is closed on a Sunday so I called on Monday and left a message for Sandra to call me back. She didn't. I called again on Wednesday 21st Oct in the morning and again left a message for Sandra to call back. She didn't. I called again around 2.30pm that day and finally spoke to Sandra. I informed her we wanted to cancel the procedure.

She said 50% of our deposit would be repaid as per Optical Express terms and conditions of not cancelling the appointment within 3 days. I queried this and she said it says it in the pack they gave us to take away, and it's in the document Aga signed after her optometrist tests on the 7th of Sept. There was no mention of T&C on the screen she signed and obviously we weren't told this.

I asked Sandra if there was anything she could do as I had called but she never returned my call, and they are shut on a Sunday. She said she would see what she could do and call me back.

She didn't call back. I got back in touch with her, and she said she had spoken the head office, and everything should be fine. I got a text from Optical Express on 9th November saying the refund was ready to be processed with no mention of it only being 50%.

Meanwhile we went to get a 2nd opinion with a surgeon said he couldn't understand why Optical Express had advised Aga needed to have Lens Replacement. He said he wouldn't recommend that treatment for someone as young as Aga (she was 47 at the time) and she could have laser.

When the refund recahed my account I noticed that Optical Express had only refunded £250 of the £500 deposit. I complained to Sandra who now can't help so I escalate the complaint, and received a message to contact someone in the complaints dept.

We speak and she is insistent that the rest of my money will not be refunded and there was nothing she could do. I mentioned again that Sandra had said it would be fine, and pointed out the fact that they had recommended treatment that Aga didn't need, that I had called to cancel etc. She said she would speak to Sandra at the St Albans branch and get back to me. That was early December and all we've had since is an email asking us to be patient due to Covid!

I called Sandra again to confirm that she had told us that Aga couldn't have laser eye surgery. She did confirm this, and when I challenged her about why another clinic had effectively said that this was nonsense she hung up. I have this conversation recorded. She didn't know it was being recorded because she hung up before I had the chance to tell her.

I am not giving up on this and wondered if you can offer any advice?
admin: TWO [strike]technicians[/strike] salespeople - no pressure huh!
Please send your phone number to sasha@opticalexpressruinedmylife.co.uk
NB: This is another compaint for the GOC, as I will explain when we speak
Last Edit:01 Apr 2021 16:18 by TerryL
  • Angela Owens

Replied by Angela Owens on topic Surgery booked with Dr Dhanireddy

Posted 30 Mar 2021 15:46 #118
Have wanted lens replacement surgery for some time and as I have a big birthday on the horizon, thought what a nice present to myself.
Attended consultation at Optical Express Cardiff branch on 19th March 2021, had my iScan and was told I had cataracts, which surprised me as this had not been previously mentioned in previous optician appointments and my eye sight isn’t actually that bad.
I paid the £500 deposit and surgery was scheduled for 5th April at the Bristol store. I thought I had done my research but clearly not.
Liam from the Cardiff store contacted me on 23rd of March requesting remainder of payment, he used the excuse that he thought I needed finance but I had already told him during initial appointment at Cardiff that finance would not be needed. Final payment is required 7 days prior to surgery so alarm bells started to ring.
During my ‘experienced clinician’ phone call I asked the name of the surgeon who will be performing the procedure, this surely should of been available at time of booking.
When I googled Dr Sudheer Dhanireddy I was traumatised by events that happened at the Bristol store at beginning of March.
I tried to contact Cardiff store on several occasions and was eventually successful on Thursday 25th when I requested a call back so further questions could be asked. I wanted to ask about Mr Dhanireddy’s complication rate, how many extractions he had performed etc. I was told someone would contact me. Heard nothing, so again rang Cardiff store on Saturday and was told the same. By now my anxiety over this surgery was increasing, I rang customer services on Monday 29th and following the conversation have decided not to go ahead.
The whole journey has been a nightmare, why am I mucking with my eyesight when I don’t really need to. If you are paying thousands of pounds to have a surgical procedure surely meeting the surgeon or at least having a conversation with him is vital and a necessity for any patient contemplating would could be a negative life changing experience.
So glad I kept researching and found this forum, if you don’t need to then don’t. The risks involved were not thoroughly explained to me and I feel very poorly informed by Optical Express and I will be cancelling. Thank you Sasha for tirelessly working to enable people to make informed decisions, hopefully not to jeopardise their eyesight.
I am cancelling my surgery and expect I will have to fight for my deposit to be refunded. Please can you offer any advice as to the best way to go about this?
Thank you, Angela
admin: Quite amazing that OE still trying to sell Dr Dhanireddy to customers with his recent track record!
Please send email with your phone number :kiss:
Last Edit:30 Mar 2021 20:04 by Angela Owens
  • Jason Hawen

Replied by Jason Hawen on topic £5751 Payment Refund

Posted 19 Mar 2021 08:53 #119
Hello, I'm booked in at Optical Express Southampton 20th March for multifocal lens replacement surgery.

After my consultation I raised my concerns regarding that I work nights and was worried about glares, halos and starbursts but was told that these were only temporary and would go as my eyes adjusted to the lenses. After researching the type of lenses and finding a lot of problems reported with them that do not go away I rang Optical Express numerous times but on each occasion I was told that they are not clinically trained and my surgeon would discuss this on the day. I have not had any conversations with my allocated surgeon Dr Dimitris Kazakos only a brief telephone conversation with someone from the clinical team. The fact that it takes Optical Express on average 15mins just to answer my calls has raised concerns about any aftercare issues I might have. But the biggest worry was at my consultation appointment the woman was struggling to work some of the machines to check my eyes and one machine she really didn't know if she had done it correct and asked a colleague to check and he just said it should be okay and that set off a few alarm bells. I paid £5751 and am worried about getting my money back when I cancel. Please can you help me. Thanks Jason
admin: You have been lied to, because glare, haloes, etc... are common and permanent problems with multifocal lenses, as your research has already shown.
And there can be no argument that Dimitris Kazakos should not have agreed to operate on any patient without having spoken with them prior to the day of surgery.
This matter needs to be reported to both the GMC and GOC.
Call Optical Express immediately to cancel, and send email with your phone number for further advice: sasha@opticalexpressruinedmylife.co.uk
Last Edit:19 Mar 2021 16:24 by Jason Hawen
  • R Stead
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Replied by R Stead on topic Deposit for surgery with Muhammad Kazmi

Posted 17 Mar 2021 11:14 #120
Hi Sasha 

I was hoping you could advise me about obtaining my deposit back from Optical Express. I paid my £500 deposit last week (10 March 2021).

I initially went to an appointment in Huddersfield on 6 March but was unsure about proceeding especially given the optometrist (Sobia) said I could not achieve 20/20 vision due to my prescription but I was a good candidate for surgery nethertheless as my eyes were healthy. I did sign something at the appointment but I was told this was just to say I was happy with the information I was given at the appointment following the eye checks. 

I then had a call from their sales team in Scotland (10 March 2021) asking what it would take for me to move forward. They offered me an appointment with the surgeon Dr Muhammad Kazmi prior to any surgery date to allay my concerns and was told if I didn't want to go ahead after this I could still get my deposit back no problem. I was advised to book the surgery immediately as this could always be cancelled or moved. Feeling pressured I thought I had nothng to lose as i could cancel after seeing the surgeon.

However since booking this appointment I googled Dr Muhammad Kazmi and found your website. With serious concerns after reading so many complaints about him (and Optical Express) and that he's being sued by his damaged patients I decided to cancel. But when I looked at the terms and conditions they say you are only entitled to a full deposit refund if cancellling within 3 days - this is not what I was told on the phone!

Your advice would be greatly appreciated.
admin: You weren't fully informed before being chased into paying a deposit by their head office 'hunters' - and never would have been!

Fyi: www.theguardian.com/society/2014/sep/20/...cs-laser-eye-surgery

The optom, 'consultant' aka 'refractive technician', and store manager, all get a percentage of sales, and Sobia would no doubt recommend surgery to a child if she could get away with it! This needs to be reported to the GOC.

I'm interested to know what they had you sign as I suspect they're including these statements in their patient satisfaction results!

Meanwhile, you are entitled to a full refund of your deposit, no matter what their worthless T&Cs say!

Send email with your phone number: sasha@opticalexpressruinedmylife.co.uk
Last Edit:17 Mar 2021 15:46 by R Stead
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