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Optical Express Ruined My Life - Discuss...


Suing Optical Express 28 May 2015 19:11 #31

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I am taking OE to Small Claims Court and wrote to them asking who I should name as defendant. This is the response that I received from their in house solicitor, who has not responded in full within the stated 14 days.

My surgery was with Optical Express as far as I was aware, and I still intend to pursue them in the Small Claims Court as they still trade from 22 Harley Street no matter what they call themselves!

Compensation payments 28 Apr 2015 14:52 #32

In 2008, a woman who suffered peritonitis after a botched hysterectomy was awarded £160,000 in compensation, yet, "Mrs Ronayne went on to make a good recovery."

In 2013 Mr Ronayne was awarded £9,000 for the shock of seeing his wife's (temporary) altered appearance.

Shockingly, the amount of compensation generally paid to people whose eyes are irreparably damaged by refractive eye surgery is considerably less.

And their families don't get a penny for their distress :kiss:

Help with where to start suing Optical Express 22 Feb 2015 23:52 #33

  • Donna
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Last February (2014) I went to see if I was able to have eye surgery the reason was that since my little boy broke my nose when he was toddler (accident) glasses have hurt my nose and i've struggled. i've been wearing glasses since around 2001.

I was told that yes I was suitable and practically talked into going ahead then and there, signing the agreement, offered discount etc etc...I was told how great my vision would be and watched a video.

2 weeks later I had my surgery and the following day everything was clear! 12 months later my sight is back to how it was before and i'm still using the stronger eye drops for very dry sore eyes daily.

The optician I see on my check ups actually told me that had he done the consultation he would have told me not to go ahead with the surgery as my prescription had been so small anyway. He was actually shocked that I even considered it. I told him that it was my nose and that I felt I had been talked into it. All he did was make a note and told me that I should keep coming for check ups and said that if i have surgery again it would probably make my sight worse, not better. He said that maybe in 5-10 years I could consider surgery again.

I'm still paying off the surgery. For what :(
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Nick and Jacqui 17 Feb 2015 16:46 #34

Last month Nick R agreed to accept a £25,000 out of court settlement from Optical Express.

With good vision in only one eye Nick should never have been offered laser eye surgery:

Because his solicitors were reluctant to go to court, the settlement was only half of what Nick had hoped for, and his hefty legal fees were also deducted from the payment.

The good news is that OE’s lawyers forgot to ask Nick to sign the Settlement Agreement before paying the money into his bank. But, as soon as he posted his news on OERML, the agreement was sent for signature - with a non disclosure clause, aka gagging order. Nick refused to sign and the clause was removed.

The agreement remains unsigned with ongoing discussion concerning the wording:

Due to go to court in December 2014, Jacqui contacted me last month and asked that I remove her True Story from OERML, explaining that her case was over:

I was not willing to do this and spoke with her solicitor in Scotland. I discovered that Jacqui had signed an out of court agreement, with a gagging order, and OE’s solicitors had refused to pay her unless I took her story off OERML.

It is because of these non disclosure clauses, aka gagging orders, that the true horrors of this industry were hidden for so long, until I came along and upset the industry's abundant apple cart.

I also have a gagging order in my Settlement Agreement, but I helped write it, and with an ongoing court case it's going to be worthless soon:

Removing her story from OERML was not a condition of Jacqui’s agreement, and could not be, according to this site's Terms & Conditions. Therefore, Optical Express’ solicitors had no right to demand she ask me to remove it retrospectively.

Needless to say, they backed down and Jacqui has now received her settlement (amount undisclosed).

I’ve been contacted by a number of people who signed up with ‘no win no fee’ law firms, who promised they could help, but then a year later told their clients that, for various reasons, they could do no more e.g. stores gone into administration etc…

In some of those cases the client’s home insurance covered the legal fees, so the solicitors didn't lose out but the client was left high and dry.

And since Stephanie Holloway’s case a lot of ‘ambulance chasers’ are trying to jump on the bandwagon.

If you consult a ‘no win no fee’ legal firm, be sure to ask these Qs before signing with them:

1. How many OE patients/eye surgery victims have they previously represented?
2. Did they win?
3. How much?
4. Who pays for the (expensive) medicolegal report?

NB: There is a time limit in which to commence legal action. In the UK it's 3 yrs from date of knowledge, but in Ireland only 2 yrs!

You have 6 yrs via the Small Claims court, ad can be done without legal representation. However, in my opinion this is only advisable if you're seeking a refund of your deposit, or the cost of unsatisfactory surgery, based on the Sale of Goods Act 1979.

If you have any questions, or want advice regarding which lawyers or medico legal experts to trust, please contact me: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

I also have a list of names you should absolutely avoid :kiss:
The following user(s) said Thank You: Nick

Out of Court Settlement 2015 01 Feb 2015 17:44 #35

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The PDF forwarded to me to sign a week after I received payment was created less than 24 hours after I posted here on 27th Jan (below).

Somebody must have been so shocked that they created the said wavier and gagging order at 6:49am on the 28th Jan. I am guessing somebody got out of bed early and skipped breakfast because of it. :lol:

What is very interesting in the waiver document is point 2:


How bloody convenient, when you are fighting Optical Express they will jump up and down claiming that the optom and surgeon (Turner and Qazi) are independent contractors and therefore not Optical Express employees, tell you to go and sue them directly, yet the waiver protects them.

At present OE has liabilities of approx £151 MILLION, yup one hundred and fifty one million. How on earth does a company continue to trade owing this much? Clever accounting?

The fact remains that ethically they should never have operated on me, by doing so put me at enormous risk, as retinal tears have since proven.

The settlement documentation can be viewed on Optical Express Settled My Claim Facebook: www.facebook.com/OEClaim

Out of court settlement 30 Jan 2015 06:21 #36

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Just had a look at the date stamp which Optical Expresses legal representatives now wish me to sign, one week after paying me??? It is dated the 28th Jan, one day after my post below :lol:

It seems somebody has made a boob, perhaps they totally forgot to include the gagging order in their haste to settle claims??

I think I will publish the full details of their offer AND maybe create a Facebook page called;

Optical Express Settled My Claim or
Optical Express Ruined MY Life then Settled My Claim

I'm sure Sasha won't mind me linking the FB page here once it is up.

Watch this space....

SUE THE SURGEON? 29 Jan 2015 19:45 #37

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Thanks Danny

The funny thing is, I've just received communication from my lawyer asking me to sign a receipt of funds, which you guessed it, now includes a GAGGING ORDER. Very strange all this, because I already have the funds, yet a week later and one day after making my post below, I am asked to sign a gagging order :woohoo:

Horse, Stable, Bolt???

Methinks OE is monitoring this forum, in which case give my regards to Giles Turner the optom at Liverpool One, I did mention "legal action" during my initial consultation, only took 2.5 years to settle - and tell the lab techs to clean the equipment properly after every patient.

Danny, I wish you, along with everybody else, all the best in your legal battle. OE's insurers are obviously getting twitchy since Stephanie's case.

SUE THE SURGEON? 28 Jan 2015 17:43 #38

Nick wrote:
Oh yeah, and thanks for not imposing a gagging order :woohoo:
Well done for getting somewhere with these cowboys, it may not be the amount you would have hoped for but it's something to ease the pain so to speak. My operation will be six years ago in a few months and my legal case going on for half that time.
I'm hopeful it will be sorted soon, not that i'm in any rush ,but it would be good to get it over as it's getting tedious now 3 years down the line.

If we get no firm offer from OE by mid March then it's off to court we go, it may mean another couple of years of dragging this thing through but then so be it.

I'm glad your eyes have improved and you can drive at night, something I find very difficult and sometimes impossible, its horrible and my eyes show no sign of getting any better, probably worse in fact.

Anyway, well done for completing and winning!

Out of Court Settlement 2015 27 Jan 2015 15:11 #39

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It appears Optical Express' legal representatives or insurance company are possibly running scared (who knows), probably in no small part due to Stephanie Holloway significant court award in Sept 2014, where the truth regarding OE’s business practises started to seep out.

Therefore, behind the scenes OE's legal firm are attempting to "clear up/close" a few ligation cases. One of which was me. For some reason I was not subject to any gagging order, subsequently I am able to post that, yes I did indeed settle for an all-inclusive figure of between £26000 and £24000! All inclusive means that lawyers’ fees need to be deducted from the final settlement amount, leaving me with £15,000 net.

I have been reliably informed that I should/could have received twice that amount, while I did try to push OE and the fact that the two law firms I engaged. I later chose to disengage the firm initially representing me due to lack of progress, followed by my local high street solicitors. Both who gave the distinct impression that neither were, shall we say, keen to take my claim to trial, on the basis "difficult to win, will need insurance cover, weak medico-legal report" the usual stuff.

One of the issues I faced was that once I had engaged the initial firm, it then proved difficult to change lawyers when I felt my claim was dragging and basically going nowhere. I approached at least half a dozen legal firms and was turned down based on two issues;
1) a medico-legal report based on altered and extremely biased Optical Express medical records (nope, medico expert didn’t ask me at any time what was actually said during my initial OE consultation)
2) the fact that I was already engaged by another law firm.

While the all-inclusive amount of £25000 might appear low for an morally unethical operation performed under unhygienic conditions at Optical Express's flag ship Liverpool One store two and half years ago, since this time, the sight in my operated eye has dramatically improved, probably due to the emergency operation to fix the retinal tears discovered a few months ago. Anyhow for distance I can indeed now see clearly, 20/20 in fact, am able to drive, day or night, so if David Moulsdale needs a chauffeur I can do it with no need for glasses.

Why after all this time everything came right, I don't know. However that does not excuse the fact that Optical Express should never have operated on me in the first place and doing so was based solely on lies and meeting sale performance targets, while patient's well being or interests played no part.

So thank you Optical Express, what happens with my eye-sight in the future remains unseen [excuse the pun], as informed by my solicitor, you cannot claim for something that may or may not happen.

Oh yeah, and thanks for not imposing a gagging order :woohoo:

My True Story:

SUE THE SURGEON? 07 Dec 2014 19:18 #40

I'm told that the approximate annual insurance premium for an ophthalmologist is £10-15,000, with no excess, but a surgeon working for OE or any other high street chain pays far more, plus excess.

Surgeons employed by Optical Express are paying insurance premiums of approximately £20,000 per year with Marsh Insurers.

This year Marsh increased the excess (per claim) from £20,000 to £40,000. And that was BEFORE Stephanie Holloway was awarded £560k when she won her claim against Optical Express and Dr Joanna McGraw.

Sweet memories B)

If Joanna McGraw leaves Optical Express I imagine it would be very difficult for her to find employment elsewhere, as I doubt any insurance company would risk indemnifying her now.

I know of one Optical Express surgeon who has SIX new claims against him, although he may not yet know this. Optical Express certainly will when the lawyers request the patient records, but will they tell him before the lawyers do?

Let's assume all six claims are successful, with minimum costs of £40k each, the surgeon will personally be liable for £240,000.

As long as surgeons continue to accept the Optical Express model of 'care', not seeing the patient until minutes before surgery, operating on unsuitable patients, lists of at least 22 patients a day, etc... then they are at risk of losing everything they own - and being unable to work in the industry again.

Stephanie won her case on lack of informed consent alone, and the details of her case were far from unique.

I provided Stephanie's legal team with the Patient Advisor Flow, essentially a training manual for Optical Express 'refractive technicians' (sales staff), which proved that her description of the sales process was true.

Nothing's changed, and I have since been sent a number of other documents, all of which will help support future legal claims.

No wonder Optical Express surgeons are getting nervous :kiss:

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