Re MM [2013] MHLO 150 (UT)

(1) The tribunal did not misdirect itself by applying the s2 criteria to a s3 case. (2) However, the tribunal's reasoning was inadequate. The tribunal stated that all the evidence was to the effect that MM's mental disorder 'warrants his treatment in hospital' (this is language from the s2 criteria), but it was only (part of) the medical evidence in which there was any confusion as to the criteria. The findings of fact (that the condition was chronic and relapsing etc) did not show that the mental disorder warranted detention (or made it appropriate). The only finding that could support the tribunal's decision was the medical evidence, which was affected by reference to the wrong legal test. In those circumstances the tribunal should have (a) shown that they had applied the correct criteria and not made the same mistake as the doctor, and (b) shown by precise findings of fact that the s3 criteria were satisfied. A blanket reference to a possibly-contaminated report did not suffice, and the tribunal made things worse by expressing its legal conclusions in the same confused terms as the medical report.

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