Article from Reason by Eric Boehm.

A California-based online retailer has been ordered to pay a penalty of $60,000 for selling non-corrective, purely cosmetic contact lenses without first obtaining prescriptions for the non-prescription products.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) says Lawrence Duskin repeatedly violated the agency’s Contact Lens Rule, which stipulates that retailers can sell contact lenses only after obtaining a copy of a valid prescription or otherwise verifying the consumer’s prescription with the physician who issued it. The rule applies even to non-corrective lenses like the ones Duskin had been selling through a variety of online costume shops since at least 2014. The commission initially fined Duskin $575,000—the largest fine ever issued for a violation of the Contact Lens Rule—before suspending all but $60,000 of the penalty, conditioned on Duskin complying with a variety of record-keeping and administrative requirements.

It’s probably pretty easy to understand why Duskin wasn’t verifying his customers’ prescription. You wouldn’t expect to have to check for a prescription before selling a pair of goofy costume glasses or Quidditch goggles for a Harry Potter cosplay.

Alysa Bernstein, an attorney with the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, says the strict rules are necessary because contact lenses are more intrusive than a pair of glasses.

Read the entire article at Reason.

Image Credit: By Jericho [CC BY 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons