Member complaints policy

AOP's formal complaints policy

Our aim

We are committed to providing a quality service for members, working in an open and accountable way that builds trust and respect. 


An informal approach is appropriate when it can be achieved. But if concerns cannot be satisfactorily resolved informally, then the formal complaints procedure should be followed. The formal complaints procedure is intended to ensure that all complaints are handled fairly and consistently. 

The AOP's responsibility will be to:
  • Acknowledge the formal complaint in writing 
  • Respond within a stated period of time 
  • Deal reasonably and sensitively with the complaint 
  • Take action where appropriate
A complainant's responsibility is to:
  • Bring their complaint, in writing, to AOP's attention, no later than eight weeks of the issue arising
  • Raise concerns promptly and directly with a member of staff at the AOP
  • Explain the problem as clearly and as fully as possible, including any action taken to date
  • Allow AOP a reasonable time to deal with the matter
  • Recognise that some circumstances may be beyond the AOP's control

Formal complaints procedure

Stage one
  • On receiving a complaint, the relevant staff member will try resolve the issue informally. Should the complainant not find this satisfactory, they may formally write to the member of staff, or the member of staff’s manager, detailing the reason for the complaint, the consequences to them as a result, and the remedy they are seeking

  • Any complaint received will be acknowledged within four working days of receipt, a response and explanation will be received within 10 working days
Stage two
  • If the member is not satisfied with the initial response they can write to the AOP's Chief Executive and ask for the complaint and the response to be reviewed

  • The Chief Executive will acknowledge the request within four working days of receipt, a response will be received within 10 workings days
Final stage
  • If the complainant is not satisfied with the subsequent reply from AOP's Chief Executive, they may write to the AOP Chairman within 10 working days. The letter can be sent to the AOP address and will be forwarded on. The letter should state why the member is dissatisfied with the outcome

  • The Chairman will respond normally within 10 working days to inform the complainant of the action which will be taken to investigate the complaint, and when they can expect to hear the outcome of the investigation

Definition of a complaint

The AOP defines a complaint as 'any expression of dissatisfaction that is not resolved at initial contact and requires a further response'.

AOP address

Association of Optometrists
2 Woodbridge Street

Online Dispute Resolution

The European Commission has set up an Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) website for consumers who are unhappy with products or services they have bought online. For AOP, this includes membership, subscription and events. If this applies to you, you can submit a complaint using the ODR website. You will receive details of our Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) body, the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), along with your option to have your complaint reviewed by them. You may contact the FOS directly using the details listed above.

Alternatively, you may send your complaint to us by email to