of the Complaint and Investigation Process
READ THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION CAREFULLY
PRIOR TO FILING YOUR COMPLAINT AND RETAIN
THIS PAGE FOR FUTURE REFERENCE**
Ohio Optical Dispensers Board (Board) has the responsibility
to enforce the laws and rules governing the practice
of Opticianry and Ocularistry in the state of Ohio.
Board has the authority to:
Deny an application for failure to demonstrate the
requirements for licensure;
Discipline an individual’s license to practice as
a licensed Optician or Ocularist in Ohio for failure
to practice in accordance with the law and rules or
the standards of safe practice regulating the practice
of Opticianry and Ocularistry in Ohio; and,
Investigate and discipline unlicensed individuals
who illegally sell/dispense without a current, valid
prescription for contact lenses, whether for correction
or for cosmetic purposes.
Board does not have the authority to:
financial compensation to a complainant (the person
or organization that files the complaint) or intervene
in litigation in any court;
legal jurisdiction over any licensed health care professional,
other than a licensed Optician or Ocularist, who is
practicing within their legal scopes of practice.
complaint form may be obtained under a section of
the Board’s web site (www.optical.ohio.gov/forms/ComplaintForm.pdf
After receipt of a signed/dated formal complaint,
including a written narrative, an acknowledgement
letter will be mailed to the complainant. It is important
that a person who feels that they may have a complaint
against an Optician or Ocularist write down everything
from the time they feel they may have a complaint
to record details while still fresh. Be sure that
all notes are dated; the names of everyone that has
been contacted or dealt with are recorded as well
as logging all phone conversations including who said
what and at what time. This information should be
part of the complaint filed with the Board.
All information gathered in the course of an investigation
is confidential and not subject to disclosure, including
the name of the individual filing the complaint.
Board’s investigatory staff investigates all complaints
received, assigns a case number to the complaint,
and will initially determine if the complaint falls
within the jurisdiction of the Board’s authority.
The Board will notify a complainant if the matter
does not fall within the jurisdiction of the Board
and will close the complaint. If the complaint is
within the jurisdiction of the Board, a member of
the investigatory staff may ask for additional information,
such as documentation, physical evidence, or clarification
of the information already provided by the complainant.
Interviews are conducted with the complainant when
The Board routinely interviews the respondent (the
licensee or applicant who is the subject of the complaint)
and any other witnesses that may have information
regarding the complaint.
When a violation cannot be substantiated following
an investigation, a case may be closed with no formal
action. Cases closed without formal action do not
become a public record; therefore, information gathered
during the course of the investigation cannot be
released. The investigatory information, however,
will be kept in the respondent’s file and may be
used in any additional complaints filed against that
an investigation indicates that a violation appears
to have occurred and formal action is required, the
Board may seek to negotiate a Consent Agreement with
A Consent Agreement is an agreement between the Board
and the licensee which usually contains the applicable
pieces of law or rules that the licensee has violated,
and any disciplinary action(s) agreed upon by the
Board and the licensee.
Consent Agreements are public records and may be published
in any of the Board’s meeting minutes or other publications
of the Board or professional organizations.
Notice of Opportunity for an Administrative Hearing
a violation is believed to have occurred but no consent
Agreement is offered or agreed upon by the respondent,
the Board may file formal charges, which are presented
to the licensee in a document titled “Notice of Opportunity
for Hearing.” If the Board approves such charges,
the respondent may request a public administrative
hearing within thirty (30) days of the mailing of
If an administrative hearing is scheduled, the complainant
is typically subpoenaed as a witness to provide testimony
in the hearing. In such a case, the Assistant Attorney
General assigned to the Board assists and guides in
the preparation of witness testimony and presentation
of documentation. The licensee also has the right
to be represented by their own legal counsel and
to call witnesses and present evidence and examine
the complainant and/or any other witnesses testifying
on behalf of the Board. This may all be done before
the full Board or before a Hearing Officer assigned
by the Board to conduct the administrative hearing.
The respondent is then notified of the Board’s decision
with regards to disciplinary actions. The licensee
has the right to appeal the Board’s decision through
the appropriate court of common pleas.
actions resulting from administrative hearings are
a public record and may be published in any of the
Board’s meeting minutes or other publications of the
Board or professional organizations.
individual(s) who filed the complaint will be notified,
in writing, about the general outcome of his/her
Depending upon the complexity of the complaint, the
investigative process may take up to one year to
complete, although this is not the case for all investigations.
The complainant’s patience is appreciated during
Board does not have jurisdiction over unlicensed persons
practicing Opticianry or Ocularistry, and therefore
cannot take disciplinary action against them. However,
after an investigation, an injunction or criminal prosecution
to prohibit further unlicensed activity may be filed
with the prosecuting attorney in the county where the
violation occurred and/or any other appropriate authority,
such as another state agency.