How to get your deposit back if you change your mind about laser eye surgery

If you change your mind after signing up for laser eye surgery within the cooling-off period, or due to your risk factors changing, you’re entitled to your money back.

1 Cancel in the cooling off period

If you’re cancelling your surgery within the provider’s cooling off period, you’re entitled to get your deposit back.

Contact your clinic and tell them you wish to cancel and that you want your deposit refunded.

If you want to cancel outside of this period, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to get your money back, unless the details of your surgery have changed.

2 Cancelling if surgery changes

If you decide not to go ahead with your surgery after meeting with your consultant because the procedure or the risks have changed, you should be entitled to a full refund. 

This includes your deposit, even if it was described as non-refundable.

You are also entitled to a full refund if you've paid the full amount in advance of surgery and you find your surgery or the associated risks have changed. 

3 Make a request in writing

If your provider is refusing to give you a refund - despite the risks or procedure having been changed - you should make a request for a refund in writing.

Explain the reasons you are requesting a full refund and explain that you no longer wish to proceed with your surgery. 

If you're cancelling the surgery within your provider's cooling off period, explain that it is in breach of its own terms and conditions. 

4 Make a formal complaint

If your provider still refuses to give you a refund, you should make a formal complaint. 

Make sure you mark your letter as such and outline that you wish to escalate your complaint to the provider's formal complaints procedure. 

If your provider is failing to stick to its own cooling off period, again point out that it is in breach of its own terms and conditions.

Your provider might refuse a refund on the grounds that the contract you signed doesn't allow you to change your mind, even as a result of new information provided by your surgeon. 

If this happens, explain that the relevant term in the contract is unfair under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999.

5 Use the small claims court

You can use the small claims court for most contract claims in order to claim back money that is owed to you. 

In the case of trying to get your deposit or pre-payment back for laser eye surgery, you can claim your provider has unlawfully withheld your money. 

For more information, read our guide to using the small claims court

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