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See also: General information. A summary of the coronavirus resources can be found here: Coronavirus resources.

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Resources > Author : Edge Training or Law Society or Mental Health Tribunal

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Resource Type Sentence Abstract Date
Consultation on paper hearings for CTO reference cases Consultation

The Tribunal Procedure Committee is consulting on changes to the rules so that the Tribunal may (1) make a decision on a reference under s68 (duty of managers to refer cases to tribunal) without a hearing if the patient is a community patient and has consented to this; and (2) strike out a party's case without a hearing. The purpose is to save money. The rationale given for the first proposal is that community patients are often content with their position and do not want to attend the hearing or medical examination; that if the patient does not attend then full reports often mean there is little point having a hearing; and that hearings place an unnecessary burden on community patients, who are likely to be quite capable of making the necessary decisions and are entitled to IMHAs and Legal Aid. It is anticipated that all community patients would be posted a form inviting them to consent to their case being decided without a hearing. In relation to the second proposal, it is intended that the power would be used when it is obvious that the tribunal lacks jurisdiction. Consultation runs from 1/6/11 to 23/8/11.

Tribunal Procedure Committee consultation page

Tribunal Procedure Committee, 'Consultation on proposed amendments to the Tribunal Procedure (First-tier Tribunal) (Health, Education and Social Care Chamber) Rules 2008 (SI 2008/2699)' (1/6/11)

Tribunal Procedure Committee, 'Response to consultation on proposed amendments to the Tribunal Procedure (First-tier Tribunal) (Health, Education and Social Care Chamber) Rules 2008 (SI 2008/2699) (1 June 2011 – 29 August 2011)' (February 2012)

2011-06-01
Consultation on proposed changes to listing procedure Consultation

The Tribunals Service are consulting stakeholders on new procedures and forms for the listing of cases.

Consultation details on "MHRT" website - 12/4/10

Mental Health Lawyers Association: Consultation - proposed changes to Tribunal listing procedure - 7/4/10 - Membership required

Summary of Consultation Responses - 30/7/10

2010-04-30
Edge Training, 'Liberty Protection Safeguards: Jargon Buster' (18/6/19) Document

LPS glossary

Edge's summary of this document is as follows: "The Edge LPS Jargon Buster provides a detailed explanation of terms used in LPS such as ‘condition’ (used in a number of different ways), reviews, determinations and the relevant person (did you know the same term can relate to three different roles?)"

2019-06-18
Law Society, 'Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice and updates' (19/3/20) Web page Coronavirus resource

Law Society coronavirus guidance

This guidance contains information under the headings: (1) Advice for employers; (2) Advice for firm owners, managing partners or senior leaders; (3) Advice for members visiting police stations, prisons or courts; (4) Advice for international firms; (5) Advice for conveyancers; (6) Advice for litigators; (7) Advice for legal aid firms.

2020-03-19
Law Society, 'Mental Health Accreditation: Application and re-accreditation application forms guidance notes and policies' (dated 5/12/18) Web page

This document contains updated guidance on the professional development requirements for panel membership. Dated: December 2018. Metadata: created 5/12/18. Downloaded 7/12/18. Filename: mental-health-accreditation-guidance-december-2018.pdf

2018-12-05
Law Society, 'Parliamentary briefing: Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill: House of Commons second reading' (18/12/18) Document

Parliamentary briefing on Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill

Extract from Law Society website: "The Law Society is concerned by provisions in the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill. While attempting to simplify the current arrangements under the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS), the Bill removes vital existing safeguards for cared-for people. The Bill should be amended to avoid the unlawful treatment of the vulnerable individuals who receive care and treatment under conditions of detention. Many changes have been made but there is still some way to go. There is a real risk that many of the flaws in the existing system will be duplicated and that the new system will replace one deficient system with another than removes existing safeguards for people. This briefing sets out our key positions on the Bill."

2018-12-18
Medical examination of the patient - consultation Consultation

The Tribunal Procedure Committee propose to amend the rules as follows: (a) to make the medical examination discretionary (except in s2 cases, where there is to be no change); (b) to allow any member of the tribunal to view the medical records (rather than just the medical member); (c) to require either a medical examination or a finding that one is unnecessary or not practicable before a tribunal can proceed in the patient's absence.

Consultation:

Response:

  • Tribunal Procedure (Amendment) Rules 2014/514 — Extract from Explanatory Note: "Rules 17 to 20 amend rules 32, 34, 37 and 39 of the HESC Rules. The amendments relate to the examination by the Tribunal of patients and their medical records and to the circumstances in which the Tribunal may proceed with the hearing of the appeal in the absence of the patient." In force 6/4/14.§
2013-06-18
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Direction for disclosure of medical records to legal representatives in all cases for the duration of the Pilot Practice Direction' (25/3/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

Automatic disclosure of medical records

Owing to the fact that representatives cannot arrange for patients to sign consent forms, this direction requires the responsible authority: (1) to allow immediate access to the patient's medical and nursing notes upon receipt of the CNL1 form containing the representative's name; (2) to email without delay any notes specified by the representative; and (3) to highlight any information in the notes not to be disclosed to the patient (the representative must not disclose this information without further order of the tribunal).

2020-03-25
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Ensuring patients can access justice' (Sarah Johnston DCP, 22/5/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

MHT remote hearings

This article on the Judiciary website explains the adoption of remote hearing procedures by the MHT.

2020-05-22
Mental Health Tribunal, 'First-tier Tribunal (Mental Health) update' (2/4/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

MHT telephone hearing guidance

Information in this update includes: (1) all face to face hearings will be changed to telephone hearings for the foreseeable future; (2) the telephone attendee form, including the patient's number, is required 6 days before the hearing (24 hours for s2); (3) at the hearing the tribunal judge will telephone the patient with an invitation to join the call.

2020-04-02
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Further update on coronavirus situation' (1/4/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

MHT update including listing

(1) All hearings have been postponed for certain community patients (CTO and conditional discharge), unless they have already been listed for paper review, until the revocation of the coronavirus pilot PD, or earlier if the tribunal directs. (The original summary here wrongly said "all community patients" - apologies.) (2) Section 2, conditional discharge recall, and CAMHS cases are the priority for listing; other cases were not being listed, but s3 and restricted cases should now begin to be listed. (3) Representatives are requested not to call the tribunal unless absolutely necessary, and to seek directions for late reports.

2020-04-01
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Guidance for the observation of tribunal hearings in the First-tier Tribunal Health Education and Social Care Chamber (mental health jurisdiction)' (10/1/19) Tribunal guidance

Observation guidance

This guidance supersedes Mental Health Tribunal, 'Guidance for the observation of tribunal hearings' (5/11/09), the main difference being that it is no longer necessary for observation requests by solicitors, barrister, nurses, doctors, social workers etc to be made in advance to the Deputy Chamber President.

2019-01-10
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Guidance for the observation of tribunal hearings' (5/11/09) Tribunal guidance

Observation guidance

This guidance has been superseded by Mental Health Tribunal, 'Guidance for the observation of tribunal hearings in the First-tier Tribunal Health Education and Social Care Chamber (mental health jurisdiction)' (10/1/19). It deals with the various categories of observers and the terms on which they may be permitted to attend tribunal hearings.

2009-11-05
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Help for users' (15/4/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

MHT guidance for patients

This guidance explains that hearings will be heard via telephone/video, by a tribunal judge alone ("because we have less support because of the coronavirus"), there will be no medical examination (because "people cannot meet together"), and community hearings will not take place ("because of the difficulties we have in organising hearings here everyone can participate" - unless the patient or representative explains "why your case must go ahead").

2020-04-15
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Message from the Deputy Chamber President' (2/4/20) Tribunal guidance

MHT coronavirus update

This message includes the following information: (1) the tribunal is prioritising urgent hearings; (2) the administration should only be contacted if necessary; (3) the tribunal cannot currently make directions for reports.

2020-04-02
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Order and directions for all community patients who are subject to a CTO or conditional discharge and who have applied or been referred to the tribunal for the duration of the Pilot Practice Direction' (26/3/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

Hearing postponement for certain community patients

(1) The hearings of certain community patients will be postponed, unless they have already been listed for paper review. (2) It applies to patients “over 18” (this is meant to mean 18 or over) presumably at the time of the application or reference. (3) The following will be postponed: (a) applications by CTO patients (s66(1)); (b) applications by conditionally-discharged (C/D) patients (s75(2)); (c) periodic mandatory references in the cases of CTO patients (s68(2) and s68(6)). (4) The following will not be postponed: (a) discretionary references for CTO patients (s67(1)); (b) discretionary references for C/D patients (s71(1)); (c) revocation references for CTO patients (s68(7)); (d) recall references for C/D patients (s75(1)). (5) The order purports to postpone periodic mandatory references for C/D patients (s71(2)) but these references are only made for a "restricted patient detained in a hospital". (6) The hearings will take place on the first convenient date after revocation of the Pilot Practice Direction, or earlier if the tribunal orders (the parties are to agree a new listing window after revocation and apply for a new date). (7) All parties are at liberty to apply to vary the order and directions in exceptional cases. (8) The reason given for the order is that (a) it is "not feasible or practicable for a community patient under the government's 'stay at home' policy to attempt to participate in a hearing"; (b) cases where the patient is deprived of his liberty are being prioritised for listing; (c) postponement is proportionate to the "extreme demands being placed on health, social care and justice services by the pandemic"; (d) the case will be relisted as soon as practicable "having regard to any temporary regulations or other priorities that may prevail during the coronavirus emergency".

2020-03-26
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Order and directions for listing of community hearings' (6/5/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

Community hearings are now being listed

These cases had been postponed on 26/3/20 but now will be listed for hearing because the tribunal "has now achieved a level of administrative support to be able to list cases for community patients". The order and directions set out the duties on patients' representatives and responsible authorities in relation to reports, consideration of paper hearings, agreed hearing dates, and remote hearing practicalities.

2020-05-06
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Update on coronavirus situation' (18/3/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

MHT coronavirus guidance

The position set out in this guidance is that: (1) hearings will continue as planned; (2) hearings require all three panel members, but this may change as part of the contingency plan being prepared; (3) requests to give evidence via telephone should be sent to the mhtcorrespondence email address; (4) hearings are being arranged as telephone conferences when hospitals are in lock-down; (5) listing window extension requests should be submitted to mhtcasemanagementrequests, but extended windows may be part of the contingency plan; (6) the tribunal is pushing for greater provision for paper hearings; (7) pre-hearing medical examinations are continuing, subject to the circumstances of each case, but these could cease if all hearings become telephone reviews. Largely superseded by: Tribunals Judiciary, 'Guidance from the Chamber President and Deputy Chamber President of HESC regarding the Mental Health jurisdiction' (Coronavirus, 19/3/20).

2020-03-18
Mental Health Tribunal, 'Video Conference Hearings' (6/4/20) Letter Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

MHT video hearings

From 13/4/20 all cases will be listed as video hearings using the Common Video Platform (CVP), instead of telephone hearings. Telephone hearings had taken longer and made communication more difficult, and it is hoped that video hearings will be an improvement.

2020-04-06
Pilot Practice Direction: Health, Education and Social Care Chamber of the First-Tier Tribunal (Mental Health) (Coronavirus, 19/3/20) Tribunal guidance Coronavirus resource

Mental Health Tribunal coronavirus Practice Direction

For the pilot period, initially six months: (1) every decision, including those that dispose of proceedings, will be made by a judge alone, unless the CP, DCP or authorised salaried judge appoints two or three people; (2) the tribunal will suggest that CTO reference hearings are dealt with on the papers under rule 35; (3) it will not be "practicable" under rule 34 for any pre-hearing medical examinations to take place during the pandemic (no mention is made of video or telephone conferencing); (4) panels of one of two may seek the advice of one or more non-legal members to assist in decision-making, provided the advice is recoded and disclosed to the parties.

2020-03-19
The Role of IMHAs in Hearings - consultation Consultation

Consultation on draft Guidance Note on the role of IMHAs (in their capacity as IMHAs, rather than as representatives) at Tribunal hearings. Consideration is given to (1) attendance at the hearing; (2) seating arrangements; (3) relationship with the legal representative; (4) role in relation to any procedural issues; (5) giving of evidence; (6) asking questions and addressing the panel; (7) right of access to the Tribunal's decision.

Consultation document

Mental Health Lawyers Association, 'MHLA response to the consultation by the Tribunals Service (Mental Health) on the role of IMHAs on MHT hearings', 11/12/10

2010-10-14

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