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MHT capacity cases

The pages below are initially ordered according to the dates on which they were added to the site (most recent first). The order can be changed by clicking on the symbol beside a column heading: click on the symbol beside "Page and summary" for alphabetical order; click beside "Categories" for the order in which the cases were reported. Click on the arrow symbol again to reverse the order. Click on a page name to view the relevant page.
Page and summaryDate added to siteCategories
VS v St Andrew's Healthcare [2018] UKUT 250 (AAC) — (1) The capacity that a patient must have in order to make a valid MHT application is that the patient must understand that he is being detained against his wishes and that the First-tier Tribunal is a body that will be able to decide whether he should be released. This is a lower threshold than the capacity to conduct proceedings. (2) (Obiter) a solicitor appointed under rule 11(7)(b) can request to withdraw an application in the best interests of the patient, but on the facts the tribunal had been entitled to give effect to the patient's own desire to come before a tribunal. (3) When a tribunal lacks jurisdiction it should strike out the proceedings but (obiter) if the proceedings were fair then the use of withdrawal rather than strike out is unlikely to be a material error of law. 2018-08-252018 cases, Brief summary, MHT capacity cases, Transcript, Upper Tribunal decisions
PI v West London Mental Health NHS Trust [2017] UKUT 66 (AAC), [2017] MHLO 8 — "The issue in this appeal was how the First-tier Tribunal (Mental Health) should react when, during the course of a tribunal hearing, it appeared that the patient no longer had capacity to appoint or instruct his solicitor. The Appellant patient criticised the tribunal for (a) refusing to review his capacity during the hearing and, in particular, after he left the hearing and (b) failing to give adequate reasons for its refusal to review his capacity during the hearing. I have concluded that the tribunal erred in law by failing to give adequate reasons for its decision not to review the patient’s capacity to give instructions to his legal representative during the hearing. However I do not set that decision aside because the patient was neither disadvantaged by either the representation he then received nor by the process the tribunal followed having refused to review his capacity." The Tribunal panel must keep the patient’s capacity in relation to Tribunal rule 11 under ..→2017-02-232017 cases, MHT capacity cases, No summary, Transcript, Upper Tribunal decisions
R (OK) v FTT [2017] UKUT 22 (AAC), [2017] MHLO 3 — The First-tier Tribunal's decision to strike out a case for want of jurisdiction (on the basis that the patient had lacked capacity to make the application) was upheld in these judicial review proceedings. (1) The solicitor had applied to the Tribunal under s66 in relation to a patient detained under s3. She then sought to be appointed under Tribunal rule 11(7)(b) as the client lacked capacity to represent himself. The tribunal panel found that "[i]t does not appear that the patient has the capacity to authorise anyone to make an application on his behalf and has not done so" and adjourned the hearing to allow the patient’s solicitors "to consider whether they agree that the application is invalid or provide reasons why they consider that it is valid." (2) The tribunal had not mentioned Tribunal rule 8 (Striking out a party’s case), but was in effect making a decision under it: the rule required the Tribunal to strike out proceedings where it "does not have ..→2017-01-272017 cases, Brief summary, MHT capacity cases, Powers, Transcript, Upper Tribunal decisions
YA v Central and NW London NHSFT [2015] UKUT 37 (AAC), [2015] MHLO 18 — This case concerned the appointment and duties of a legal representative appointed by the tribunal under rule 11(7). There is a distinction between the rule 11 test (capacity to ‘appoint a representative’) and capacity to conduct proceedings, but this is ‘theoretical rather than real’. The judge decided this as otherwise (given the wording of the rule 11 test) there would be cases where the tribunal could not make an appointment. The role of an appointed legal representative is akin to the role of the litigation friend in civil proceedings – ‘to provide that a patient has an effective role in the proceedings and his best interests are advanced and considered by them’. The representative should ‘advance all arguable points to test the bases for the detention in hospital’ unless he disagrees with the patient’s wishes, in which case he should ‘advance such arguments as [he] properly can in support of the patient’s expressed views…’. Having been appointed ..→2015-02-122015 cases, Detailed summary, MHT capacity cases, Transcript, Upper Tribunal decisions
AMA v Greater Manchester West MH NHSFT [2015] UKUT 36 (AAC), [2015] MHLO 17 — A personal welfare deputy cannot appoint himself (or anyone else) as a representative unless the order appointing him expressly provides for this. This case related to the withdrawal of a tribunal application, and was followed up by Tribunal Policy: Withdrawals (23 Feb 2015) [2015] MHLO 19. 2015-02-122015 cases, MHT capacity cases, No summary, Transcript, Upper Tribunal decisions