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Mental Health Law Online

The internet resource on mental health law, and mental capacity law, for England & Wales. You can read a review of the site here.

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  • 18/11/19: Case (Proceeding in absence of solicitor and patient). DA v Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust [2019] UKUT 348 (AAC) — The tribunal refused to adjourn the case of a CTO patient who had not attended the hearing, then the solicitor left the hearing because she felt unable to represent the patient in those circumstances. (1) The tribunal's initial decision to proceed in the patient's absence referred to rule 39(1) (whether the party had been notified of the hearing or reasonable steps had been taken to notify the party of the hearing, and whether it was in the interests of justice to proceed with the hearing) and rule 39(2)(a) (whether the patient had decided not to attend the hearing or was unable to attend the hearing for reasons of ill health) but not rule 39(2)(b) (whether a rule 34 medical examination of the patient been carried out or was impractical or unnecessary). However, given the assumption that, as an expert tribunal, it will have got the law right, it was more likely than not that the tribunal decided it was impractical to carry out an examination. (2) The tribunal had not considered making an appointment under rule 11(7), but this was unnecessary as there was no indication that the patient had withdrawn her instructions or lacked capacity. (3) When the solicitor departed, it was incumbent upon the tribunal to make a fresh assessment under rule 39(1) as to whether it was in the interests of justice to proceed with the hearing. Its reasons did not mention the departure and it was unlikely that the tribunal had carried out such an assessment; even if it had done so, the lack of any explanation would have rendered the reasons inadequate. (4) The matter was remitted to the First-tier Tribunal for a re-hearing by a differently-constituted panel.
  • 13/11/19: COPUG minutes. Minutes of Court User Group Meeting (15/10/19) — (1) Apologies; (2) Minutes and Action points; (3) Court Manager’s Report; (4) Misplaced COP20As and COP20Bs; (5) Interim deputyship orders that specify the date on which the appointment will end; (6) Clerical mistakes or slip rules on court orders; (7) Service of final orders (Rule 6.2); (8) Anonymised deputyship orders; (9) Delayed issue of COPDOL 11 applications; (10) Delivery of bundles and position statements; (11) Problems in deputyship orders; (12) Service of orders on Local Authority applicant; (13) P&A deputyship orders - exclusion of authority to (a) enter into/terminate tenancies or (b) sell; (14) Required forms; (15) Photographs of court as visual aid for P; (16) E-mails received out of hours to vacate next day hearings; (17) Any other business.

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