Law Society mental health accreditation scheme
Under the Legal Aid contract, advocacy at Mental Health Tribunals must be carried out by members of this accreditation scheme (previously called the "MHRT panel").
The Law Society website (at the time of writing, 18/10/19) states that "there will not be an opportunity consult any reference materials during the interview itself", despite the guidance document stating that "[a]pplicants may make use of books and other reference material when preparing the case study and may take these and any notes into the interview". It would be wise to check this for yourself as conflicting answers have been given in the past. The official position in 2017 was that the website was wrong (email from Jane Sweetman, 27/2/17). The official position now is that you are allowed to use reference materials for the Case Study Q&A but not for the Professional Ethics Q&A (email from Beth Hamill, 18/10/19) and the Law Society have again undertaken to amend the guidance.
- Law Society
- Law Society mental health accreditation scheme - CPD requirements
- Law Society mental health accreditation scheme - guidance documents
- Law Society: How to apply to the Mental Health Accreditation
- The form was changed on 17/2/17 - the main changes were the removal of question 20 ("Please state the number of CPD hours attributable to mental health related courses that you have undertaken") and a new professional development statement (referring to "Learning outcomes", "Category of learning and relevant competence" etc) - and has been changed since then also.
- Jane Sweetman, 'Mental Health Accreditation: changes to the re-accreditation process' (email from Law Society, 19/10/17) — This email describes changes to the re-accreditation process: (1) from 1/3/18 re-accreditation applicants may, and from 1/6/18 must, adhere to the following new requirements: (a) provide details of two (rather than four) case reports, and (b) "undertake one case study, which will be either a s2, s3 or restricted case, plus questions to draw out not only your legal knowledge, but also an understanding of how you would approach and represent such a client"; (2) from the next renewal date, applicants must undertake six tribunals per accreditation year (with discretion applied, for example, for those taking a career break or undertaking high profile work). The changes are subject to reasonable adjustments for applicants with a disability.§