May 2017 update


  • Mental Health Law Online CPD scheme: 12 points for £60. Obtain 12 CPD points online by answering monthly questionnaires. The scheme is an ideal way to obtain your necessary hours, or to evidence your continued competence. It also helps to support the continued development of this website, and your subscriptions (and re-subscriptions) are appreciated. For full details and to subscribe, see CPD scheme.

Case law

  • DOL discharge conditions. SSJ v MM; Welsh Ministers v PJ [2017] EWCA Civ 194 — (1) MM wanted to be conditionally discharged into circumstances which would meet the objective component of Article 5 deprivation of liberty. The Court of Appeal decided that: (a) the tribunal has no power to impose a condition that is an objective deprivation of liberty; (b) a general condition of compliance with a care plan would be an impermissible circumvention of this jurisdictional limitation; (c) purported consent, even if valid, could not provide the tribunal with jurisdiction. (2) PJ argued that his CTO should be discharged as it could not lawfully authorise his deprivation of liberty. The Court of Appeal decided that a CTO provides the power to provide for a lesser restriction of movement than detention in hospital which may nevertheless be an objective deprivation of liberty provided it is used for the specific purposes set out in the CTO scheme.
  • DOLS funding case. R (Liverpool City Council) v SSH [2017] EWHC 986 (Admin) — "By these proceedings, four English councils seek to challenge what they describe as the government's 'ongoing failure to provide full, or even adequate, funding for local authorities in England to implement the deprivation of liberty regime'. They suggest that the financial shortfall suffered by councils across the country generally is somewhere between one third of a billion pounds and two thirds of a billion pounds each year and claim that the Government must meet that shortfall. They seek a declaration that, by his failure to meet those costs, the Secretary of State for Health has created an unacceptable risk of illegality and is in breach of a policy known as the 'New Burdens Doctrine'. They seek a mandatory order requiring the Secretary of State of Health to remove the 'unacceptable risk of illegality' and to comply with that doctrine." s
  • Extradition. Korcala v Polish Judicial Authority [2017] EWHC 167 (Admin) — "This extradition appeal involves essentially two questions: (i) If a person has been found incapable of committing a criminal offence in the country in which he was tried because of mental illness, but has been ordered to be detained indefinitely in a mental hospital, has he been 'convicted' for the purposes of Part 1 of the Extradition Act 2003 ('EA')? (ii) If that person then flees the mental hospital and is wanted for a prosecution for that offence, would there be an equivalent offence if the events had taken place in England so that the double criminality requirement is satisfied and the offence qualifies as an 'extradition offence'?"

Mental Health Treatment Bill proposal

  • Mental Health Treatment Bill. The Prime Minister has stated that the Mental Health Act 1983 will be repealed following a Conservative victory in the June 2017 general election. See press articles for details. See Mental Health Treatment Bill 2017
  • Felicity Auer and Joanna Dean, 'Mental health: focus' (Legal Action, May 2017, p34). This article (written before the Conservative party's policy announcement) proposes wide-ranging reforms to the MHA 1983 "to bring it into the 21st century and in line with international human rights law" under the following headings: mental disorder; nearest relative; involuntary treatment; involuntary detention; fusion of mental health law and mental capacity law. See Mental Health Treatment Bill 2017

Mental Health Tribunal

  • MHT office closure. The following is the text of an email dated 18/5/17 in relation to an office closure: "Dear All, Please be aware that due to a burst water pipe the Leicester office is closed. We do not have access to the building and have staff travelling to other locations within the City and County. We have not been able to divert the telephones so are unable to take calls. Urgent work will take priority. All emails will be monitored but there may be some delays in providing a response. At this point in time I have no idea when the office will reopen. I will provide further updates as they become available. Thank you for your continued patience and support. Karen Early, Operations Manager, Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service". See Mental Health Tribunal
  • Karen Early, 'Mental Health Tribunal Bulletin' (HMCTS, 22/5/17). The following is the text of this bulletin: "An important message regarding the administration office: Further to last week’s message, I confirm that the Leicester office remains severely affected by a burst water pipe with some floors remaining closed. Staff have been relocated to alternative floors within the building and urgent work will continue to take priority whilst we recover from the disruption. All inboxes will be monitored but there still may be some delays in providing a response. We are now able to take calls on our usual number - 0300 123 2201 – but would ask that this is for urgent matters only. It is likely that this situation will remain for several weeks. I would like to thank you for your continued patience and support during this difficult time." See Mental Health Tribunal



Job advert


  • Switalskis Solicitors: Ninth Annual Review of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 - York, 21/9/17No results
  • Edge Training: Deprivation of liberty in children and young people - Sheffield, 29/6/17No results
  • Edge Training: MH Assessors Annual Refresher Course - London, 14/7/17No results
  • Edge Training: Best Interests Assessors Legal Update Course - London, 10/7/17No results
  • Edge Training: DOLS: a new beginning? - London, 26/6/17No results
  • Edge Training: Best Interests Assessors Report Writing Course - London, 23/6/17No results
  • Edge Training: Consent, the Mental Capacity Act and Medical Treatment Conference - London, 9/6/17No results
  • MHLA - Reaccreditation course - London, 5/6/17No results
  • MHLA - Legal Aid supervision - London, 16/5/17No results
  • ‎MHLA: Court of Protection Conference - London, 30/6/17No results
  • Difficult Conversations: End of Life Care: Advanced Legal Issues Masterclass - London, 13/5/17No results
  • BIHR: Mental Health, Mental Capacity and Human Rights: cross-sector collaboration - Blackburn, 10/5/17No results See the Events page for details of the events in the other towns.
  • York Law School: 'Nothing about us without us' - York, 26/5/17No results See Events
  • HRLA: Mental Health and Human Rights - London, 22/5/17No results See Events