Drilldown: Resources

So far there are 370 resources in the database. See also: General information and Coronavirus resources.

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Resources > Type: Consultation

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Showing below up to 81 results in range #1 to #81.

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Resource Type Sentence Abstract Date
A Platform for the Future - consultation Consultation

"In March 2010 an announcement was made that the Ministry of Justice would be bringing Her Majesty’s Courts Service (HMCS) and the Tribunals Service together, creating a single unified organisation. This consultation paper sets out the rationale for the creation of a new agency and explains what we believe the benefits will be. In seeking the views of the public on these benefits it also sets out what will remain the same following the creation of the agency."

Consultation page

Ministry of Justice, 'A Platform for the Future', ref CP14/10, 30/11/10

Adult Social Care consultation Consultation

"The overall aim of the project is to provide a clearer, modern and more cohesive framework for adult social care."

Bournewood Consultation: The approach to be taken in response to the judgement of the European Court of Human Rights in the 'Bournewood' case Consultation

"This document seeks views on the issues raised by, and consequent options for public policy arising from, the judgement of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), published on 5th October 2004, in the case of H.L. v. the United Kingdom (the 'Bournewood' judgement - so called because H.L's care and treatment took place in Bournewood Hospital)."

Consultation page on National Archives website

Breaking the cycle: effective punishment, rehabilitation and sentencing of offenders - consultation Consultation

"The Ministry of Justice Structural Reform Plan published in July 2010 set out a commitment to introduce a 'rehabilitation revolution' and conduct a review of sentencing policy. This consultation sets out the resulting proposals which aim to break the destructive cycle of crime and protect the public, through more effectively punishing and rehabilitating offenders and reforming the sentencing framework."

The proposals in relation to managing offenders with mental health problems are as follows: 'We want to ensure that our valuable resources are targeted on the people who are committed to changing their lives and being rehabilitated. In some cases, the criminal justice system is not the best place for them. This is particularly the case for offenders with mental health problems. We propose to: (a) work with the Department of Health and the Home Office to pilot and roll out liaison and diversion services nationally by 2014 for mentally ill offenders; and (b) increase the treatment capacity for offenders who present a high risk of harm where this is linked to severe personality disorders.'

Consultation page

Another consultation page (more detailed content)

Ministry of Justice, 'Breaking the Cycle: Effective Punishment, Rehabilitation and Sentencing of Offenders', 7/12/10

Cases involving people with mental health problems and/or learning disabilities as victims and witnesses Consultation 2009-03-01
Changes to Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice Consultation

Extract from press release: "Our consultation ‘Stronger Code: Better Care’ is asking for your thoughts on a new draft Code which includes: (1) five new guiding principles; (2) significantly updated chapter on how to support children and young people, on the use of restraint and seclusion and the use of police powers and places of safety; (3) new chapters on care planning, equality and human rights, links to the Mental Capacity Act and Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards, and support for victims."


Civil Bid Rounds for 2010 Contracts - consultation Consultation

Consultation closed on 23/1/09. "Through this consultation we are seeking views on our proposals for the bid criteria and award process for civil legal aid contracts that will be introduced from 2010. We are also consulting on key changes to the contract terms and to changes to the scope of legal aid funding."

Consultation Document: Delivering Excellence: Achieving Recovery: A Professional Framework for the Mental Health Nursing Profession in Northern Ireland (2010-2015) Consultation

Consultation run by NI's Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety.

Consultation documents

Consultation in relation to section 268 appeals against conditions of excessive security Consultation

"A consultation seeking views on the way forward in respect of appeals against excessive security for mental health patients following the Supreme Court decision of M v Scottish Ministers."

Consultation page

Consultation on a Separate Legal Jurisdiction for Wales Consultation

The Welsh Government are consulting on making things even more unnecessarily complicated, by creating an entirely separate legal jurisdiction for Wales.

Consultation page

Consultation on Adults with incapacity (Scotland) Consultation

Discussion page

Scottish Law Commission, 'Discussion Paper on Adults with Incapacity' (discussion paper 156, 31/7/12). Extract from news release: 'The main questions raised by the Discussion Paper are: (1) Is Scots law as it currently stands adequate to meet the requirements of the European Convention in this area? and (2) If not, how should it be changed? In particular, there is a need to decide if there should be a new procedure for authorising deprivation of liberty in residential care for adults with incapacity. If there should, what should that process be? And, very importantly, what sorts of care and what type of facilities should be regarded as involving deprivation of liberty for those who live there?'

Consultation on allocation options for funding for Local Healthwatch: PCT Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards Consultation

'Subject to the passage of the Health and Social Care Bill, the Department (DH) will allocate funding for local HealthWatch and, potentially, PCT Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards from October 2012. This new funding will be added to the current DH Learning Disabilities and Health Reform grant. This consultation is asking for your views on options for distributing the new funding for local HealthWatch and PCT Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS).'

Consultation page

Consultation on amendments to the Community Legal Service (Financial) Regulations 2000 (2009) Consultation

The plan is to increase income eligibility limits by 5%, and to introduce non-means-tested legal aid for COP proceedings for those deprived of their liberty, from April 2009. Closing date 17/2/09.

The response to the consultation is included in the explanatory memorandum to the following Regulations:

Consultation on an Equality Impact Assessment for New Mental Capacity Legislation Consultation

"Following publication of the Bamford Review report, A Comprehensive Legislative Framework and consultation on the Department's proposal, A Legislative Framework for Mental Capacity and Mental Health Legislation, the Minister in September 2009 announced his intention of preparing a single Bill encompassing mental capacity and mental health provisions."

Consultation document

Related press release

Consultation on Appointments and Diversity Consultation

Of relevance to mental health law are the following proposals: (1) Amending s63 Constitutional Reform Act 2005, which currently requires judicial appointment to be 'solely on merit', to allow the Equality Act 2010's protected characteristics (age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, gender and sexual orientation) to be taken into account: where a 'selection assessment on a range of criteria rates them as equally capable of doing the job' then the presumption will be that protected characteristics will tip the balance in favour of those possessing them. (2) To provide more opportunity for appointments based on diversity, changing the tenure of fee-paid appointments so that they no longer last until retirement, but instead for a maximum of three five-year terms save in exceptional cases where there is a clear business need.

Ministry of Justice, 'Clarke: Judiciary in need of modernisation and diversification' (press release, 21/11/11)

Consultation page

Ministry of Justice, 'Appointments and Diversity: A Public Consultation' (Consultation paper CP19/2011, 21/11/11)

Consultation on Certification of Incapacity for Medical Treatment under Part 5 Section 47 Adults with Incapacity (Scotland) Act 2000 Consultation

'This consultation seeks views on four issues on Adults with Incapacity (Scotland) Act 2000 Part 5 in relation to medical treatment. The issues are: widening the range of institutions which can offer training, whether dentists should be required to undertake training for this purpose; whether multiple section 47 medical treatment certificates should be required in some circumstances; and whether other medical practitioners not specified should be enabled to certify incapacity for medical treatment'

Consultation page

Consultation on Fees in the High Court and Court of Appeal Consultation

'A consultation proposing changes to fees in the High Court and Court of Appeal Division. It is aimed at users of the High Court and Court of Appeal Civil Division, the legal profession, the judiciary, the advice sector and all with an interest in this area in England and Wales. The aim of these proposals is to charge users of these two jurisdictions more proportionally for the resource their cases consume, while protecting access to justice for the most vulnerable. This will reduce the taxpayer subsidy of the courts service.'

Consultation page

Katy Dowell, 'MoJ plans massive rise in court fees' (The Lawyer, 16/11/11)

Consultation on low secure services and psychiatric intensive care Consultation

"A consultation document on low secure services and psychiatric intensive care is being issued today for a three month consultation by stakeholders. The purpose of this consultation is to invite the views of stakeholders on how new guidance will operate by explaining the rationale behind the strategic approach and raising questions which cover a broad range of issues."

Consultation page

Consultation on Mental Capacity Act 2005: forms, supervision and fees Consultation

Responses published: 11 March 2009

A consultation on proposed changes to three areas of the work of the Office of the Public Guardian and the Court of Protection following the implementation of the Mental Capacity Act:

1. redesign of the Lasting Power of Attorney forms 2. restructuring of the Supervision of Deputies by the Public Guardian 3. alterations to the fee structure.

This consultation was the initial stage of a wider 12-18 month investigation into the implementation of the Mental Capacity Act.

See the following for details:

Consultation on Mental Health (Assessment of Former Users of Secondary Mental Health Services) (Wales) Regulations 2011 Consultation

'Part 3 of the Mental Health (Wales) Measure 2010 is concerned with mental health assessments for former users of secondary mental health services. The Welsh Assembly Government is proposing to make Regulations under this part of the Measure which will set out certain eligibility criteria for such assessments. For example, the length of time a person will be eligible for such an assessment following their discharge from services. This consultation seeks your views on these draft regulations.'

Consultation page

Consultation documents

Consultation on Mental Health (Care Coordination and Care and Treatment Planning) (Wales) Regulations 2011 Consultation

'[This consultation] is concerned with the coordination of secondary mental health services, and care and treatment planning for secondary mental health service users. The Welsh Assembly Government is proposing to make Regulations connected to Part 2 of the Measure. This relates to the appointment of care coordinators and the making, reviewing and revising of care and treatment plans. This consultation seeks your views on these draft regulations.'

Consultation page

Consultation documents

Consultation on Mental Health (Independent Mental Health Advocates) (Wales) Regulations 2011 Consultation

'Part 4 of the Mental Health (Wales) Measure 2010 expands the statutory independent mental health advocacy scheme established by the 1983 Act. Patients subject to certain "short term" sections of the 1983 Act, and those in hospital informally (i.e. not under compulsion) are able to access the service. The Welsh Assembly Government is proposing to make Regulations connected to the expanded independent mental health advocacy scheme. This will relate to the provision, appointment and approval of advocates. It will also say which people advocates can talk to in undertaking their role of supporting patients. This consultation seeks your views on these draft Regulations.'

Consultation page

Consultation documents

Consultation on Mental Health (Regional Provision) (Wales) Regulations 2012 Consultation

'This consultation seeks your views on regulations which would enable Local Health Boards (LHBs) and local authorities in Wales to enter into regional working arrangements.'

Consultation page

Consultation on OFT Mental Capacity Guidance Consultation

"Following the consultation on irresponsible lending the OFT identified a need to provide further clarity on the issue of mental capacity as it impacts on borrowing decisions."

Office of Fair Trading, 'OFT launches mental capacity guidance consultation', Press release 6/12/10

Consultation page

Office of Fair Trading, 'Mental capacity: Draft OFT guidance for creditors: A consultation', 6/12/10

Mind's response

OFT press release: OFT publishes mental capacity guidance (28/9/11)

Consultation on our assessments of quality 2010-11 Consultation

Press release, 2/2/10

Consultation documents, 2/2/10

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)

Consultation on police guidance for mental health Consultation

"The College of Policing has published new draft national guidance clarifying the police's role in dealing with incidents involving people in mental health crisis.

"The draft Authorised Professional Practice (APP) is now open for consultation and sets out guidance for police officers and staff when investigating an offence or assisting people with mental health problems, learning disabilities and difficulties and other vulnerabilities."

Consultation on preventing suicide in England: a cross-government outcomes strategy to save lives Consultation

'This document sets out a proposal for a new suicide prevention strategy for England with the aims of reducing the suicide rate and improving support for those bereaved or affected by suicide. The draft strategy brings together knowledge about groups at higher risk of suicide, effective interventions and resources available. The closing date for consultation responses is 11 October 2011. Consultation responses will inform the final strategy, early in 2012.'

Consultation page

Consultation on proposals for a Mental Health (Scotland) Bill (2013) Consultation

From Scottish Government website: "This consultation paper seeks views on proposals for a draft Mental Health Bill. This draft Bill brings forward changes to improve the operation of the 2003 Act - notably in relation to named persons, advance statements, medical matters and suspension of detention. In addition the draft Bill makes provision for a Victim Notification Scheme for victims of Mentally Disordered Offenders."

Consultation page

Scottish Government, 'A Consultation on draft proposals for a Mental Health (Scotland) Bill' (December 2013)

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

Consultation on proposed Mental Health (Wales) Measure Consultation

As part of its Stage 1 consideration, the National Assembly for Wales’ Legislation Committee No. 3 is calling for evidence on the general principles of the proposed Mental Health (Wales) Measure.

Consultation page

Consultation on revision of the Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice for Wales Consultation

"The new draft Code takes account of the changes to relevant legislation since the previous Code was written. In particular: (a) the requirements in the Mental Health (Wales) Measure 2010 with regards to care and treatment planning and the expanded provision of independent mental health advocacy; (b) the relationship between the Act, the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards.

Within the draft Code there is strengthened emphasis on: (a) the involvement of patients and, where appropriate, their families and carers in all aspects of assessment and treatment; (b) understanding the principles of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and how these should apply to all care and treatment; (c) the involvement of Independent Mental Health Advocates; (d) the use of appropriate transport for patient subject to the Act to ensure their dignity and safety as far as is practicable.

There are 2 other matters of proposed guidance in the draft Code that are not in the existing code. (a) Firstly, it reiterates that the Act provides a limit of 72 hours for detention under section 136 and that assessments should only take place in a police station in exceptional circumstances. However in relation to the timing of assessments both at the police station and elsewhere, the draft Code proposes: (i) that they should be undertaken within 3 hours; (ii) that detention in a police station should not exceed a maximum of 12 hours. (b) Secondly, it proposes that a statutory care and treatment plan, if needed, will be started no longer than 72 hours after admission."

Consultation page

Welsh Government, 'Consultation on the Revision of the Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice for Wales' (document no WG26160, 4/9/15)

Welsh Government, 'Draft Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice for Wales' (4/9/15)

Law Society, 'Consultation on the Revision of the Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice for Wales: Law Society Response' (27/11/15)

Welsh Government, 'Consultation - summary of responses: Revision of the Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice for Wales' (document WG26160, June 2016)

For the revised Code of Practice, see Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice for Wales.

Consultation on Scottish tribunal rule 58 Consultation

The Scottish Government, 'Scottish Government Consultation: Amendment to Rule 58 of the Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland (Practice and Procedure) (No. 2) Rules 2005: Rule 58: Power to Decide Case Without a Hearing' (March 2011)

The Scottish Government is consulting on plans to increase the availability of rule 58 which allows the Tribunal, if all parties agree in writing, to dispose of a case without an oral hearing. The three proposed options, all dispensing with the need for agreement and presumably with the intention of cutting costs, are: (1) any party wanting a hearing must show cause why a hearing is necessary, or (2) as option 1 except the patient has the automatic right to hearing if requested, or (3) as option 1 except the hearing will take place unless the patient positively elects not to have one. It is envisaged that the rule would be used 'where there is no real dispute between the parties'.

Consultation responses. On this page, published 15/6/11, can be found all the responses to this consultation

Consultation on Service Framework for the Treatment of People with a Co-occurring Mental Health and Substance Misuse Problem Consultation

Consultation page

Welsh Government, 'Consultation Document: Service Framework for the Treatment of People with a Co-occurring Mental Health and Substance Misuse Problem 2015' (5/3/15)

Consultation on the CQC mental health strategy Consultation

"We are currently developing our strategic plan for our work on mental health over the next three to five years. We are keen to get a range of views to help us develop this plan.

"We would like to invite you to give your views as part our consultation on:

  • Where does the Care Quality Commission need to focus its efforts in the next three to five years to really make a difference in mental health?
  • How should we involve people who use services and their families and carers in developing, implementing and monitoring the strategy?"

Consultation page

Consultation on the draft code of practice to parts 2 and 3 of the Mental Health (Wales) Measure 2010 Consultation

'This consultation seeks views on a draft Code of Practice for care and treatment planning. It also covers reassessment for secondary mental health services under the Mental Health (Wales) Measure 2010. Part 2 of the Measure is concerned with: (1) the appointment of care coordinators as part of the process of planning and coordinating care; and (2) care and treatment plans for people receiving secondary mental health services. Part 3 of the Measure is concerned with: (1) former users of secondary mental health services; and (2) providing a right for them to refer themselves back to secondary services for assessment directly. The draft code sets out guiding principles and practice guidance for the operation of the Measure.'

Consultation page

Consultation documents

Consultation on the future of the Parole Board (2009) Consultation

Parole Board consultation

"Since its creation in 1968, the role of the Parole Board has changed significantly, from an advisory body to a court-like decision-making body. It has evolved in light of legislative changes, court judgments and changing caseloads, but its functions, status and resources have not been systematically considered in light of these changes. This consultation paper represents an opportunity to address this, and consider whether any changes to its sponsorship and role would support the Parole Board in carrying out its functions more effectively and efficiently."

Consultation documents on MoJ website

Consultation on the joint Department of Health / NOMS Offender Personality Disorder Pathway Implementation Plan Consultation

'This consultation is seeking your views about a new pathway approach for the treatment and management of offenders with serious personality disorders.'

Consultation page

DH, 'Response to the offender personality disorder consultation' (gateway ref 16313, 21/10/11)

Court Fees: Proposals for reform Consultation

From Government website: "Under the proposals contained in this consultation paper, those using the civil court system would, in future, be expected to meet the cost of the service where they can afford to do so, and for certain types of proceeding would be expected to contribute more than the cost. Fee remissions will continue to be provided for those who qualify, so that access to justice is not denied."

The proposals include introducing new, and amended, fees for the Court of Protection, and increased fees for judicial review.

Government website: 'Court fees: proposals for reform'

MOJ consultation website: 'Court fees: proposals for reform'

Ministry of Justice, 'Court Fees: Proposals for reform' (December 2013)† (main consultation document)

Regulatory Policy Committee, 'Impact assessment opinion: enhanced court fees' (20/1/14)† The summary of this report is: 'The Impact Assessment is not fit for purpose. The Department needs to make clear whether the proposal will result in the Court Service raising more funds than is necessary to cover their costs.'

Court Of Protection: Authorised Officers: A consultation on the delegation of some decisions in the Court of Protection to court officers Consultation

'A consultation on the proposal that an amendment be made to the Court of Protection Rules to provide for authorised officers to deal with specified types of applications. '

Ministry of Justice, 'Court Of Protection: Authorised Officers: A consultation on the delegation of some decisions in the Court of Protection to court officers' (consultation paper CP9/2011, June 2011)

Direct payments regulations consultation Consultation

"Direct payments are crucial to achieving the Government's aim to increase independence, choice and control, for service users and their carers, through allowing them the opportunity to arrange their own personalised care. The Health and Social Care Act 2008 extends the availability of direct payments to those people who lack the capacity to consent to their receipt. In addition, the government is also reviewing the current exclusions to receiving direct payments for those people who are subject to various provisions of mental health legislation in light of the modernisation of mental health law brought about by the Mental Health Act 2007. The Government is now consulting on regulations relating to these two changes."

Disclosure of Information to Victims of Mentally Disordered Offenders Consultation

"Consultation on the possible introduction of a scheme for victims of mentally disordered offenders similar to the current criminal justice Victim Notification Scheme"

Consultation page

Discussion paper on a proposed European Regulation on mutual recognition of protection measures in civil matters Consultation

'We are inviting views on a proposal for a European Regulation on mutual recognition of protection measures in civil matters. ... The Regulation aims to ensure that a protection measure (for example a non-molestation order) provided to a person in one Member State is recognised and maintained when that person travels or moves to another Member State. It is hoped that this Regulation will provide a quick and efficient mechanism which will avoid the person requiring protection having to go through time consuming court procedures in the Member State of recognition, or give evidence on the same matters a second time in order to get equivalent protection in that State.'

MoJ discussion paper

The proposed measure

[Check start date.]

DOLS regulations consultation Consultation

"These draft regulations confer power on the Care Quality Commission for the purpose of monitoring, and reporting on, the Mental Capacity Act 2005 Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards.

"The draft regulations also amend regulation 3 of the Mental Capacity (Deprivation of Liberty: Standard Authorisations, Assessments and Ordinary Residence) Regulations 2008. Regulation 3 currently sets out that one of the requirements for a person to be eligible to carry out a MCA DOLS assessment is that they must be insured in respect of any liabilities arising in connection with carrying out the assessment. We are proposing to amend this regulation so that assessors will be eligible if they have satisfied the supervisory body that they have adequate and appropriate insurance and / or indemnity arrangements in place."

Environmental design principles for adult medium secure units consultation Consultation

"This draft document launches a consultation on revisions to previously published medium secure environmental guidance (Design Guide 1993). It is anticipated the document will annex the Best Practice Guidance and Specification for Adult Medium Secure Services, published by the Department of Health in 2007."

Help shape the regulation of health and adult social care services (Consultation on new registration standards) Consultation

"The regulation of health and adult social care is changing. Take part in our public consultation to help us develop guidance on what care services must do to meet new legally enforceable registration standards. From April 2010 all regulated health and adult social care providers will be required by law to register with us. This is the first time all public and independent health and adult social care services in England will need to meet essential common standards of quality and safety. We would like your feedback on whether our guidance appropriately reflects the new registration standards and what should rightly be expected of a safe, quality care service."

Consultation documents

Home Office, 'Preventing and tackling forced marriage' (consultation from 15/11/18 to 23/1/19) Consultation

Summary from Gov.uk website: "This consultation seeks views about whether it is necessary to introduce a new legal mandatory reporting duty relating to cases of forced marriage and, if it is, what such a reporting requirement would look like. It also seeks views on how the current guidance on forced marriage could be improved and strengthened. The consultation is open to everyone. We are particularly interested in hearing from victims and survivors of forced marriage, those with expertise in the area of forced marriage, and relevant professionals, including those working in social care, education, the police and healthcare."

The introduction of this document begins: "This consultation seeks views about whether it is necessary to introduce a new legal mandatory reporting duty relating to cases of forced marriage and, if it is, what such a reporting requirement would look like. It also seeks views on how the current guidance on forced marriage could be improved and strengthened." The Background chapter begins: "A forced marriage is a marriage where one or both of the spouses does not consent to the marriage and is coerced into it, or where one or both of the spouses lacks the capacity to consent. Coercion may involve violence, threats, or different types of pressure (e.g. psychological, financial, or emotional). Forced marriage is a criminal offence in England and Wales under section 121 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. The offence applies regardless of whether the marriage ceremony is legally binding or not."


Download: URL

Type: Report🔍

Title: Preventing and tackling forced marriage: a consultation

Author: Home Office🔍

Date: 15/11/18🔍

What links here:


Independent Review of the Mental Health Act 1983 by Simon Wessely (2018) Consultation

Extract from website: "The review was set up to look at how the legislation in the Mental Health Act 1983 is used and how practice can improve. The purpose of the review is to understand the reasons for: (a) rising rates of detention under the Act; (b) the disproportionate number of people from black and minority ethnic groups detained under the Act; (c) processes that are out of step with a modern mental health care system. The review will seek the views of service users, carers, relevant professionals, and affected organisations in producing recommendations. It will produce a report with recommendations for change in autumn 2018."

Interim guidance on assisted suicide Consultation

The purpose of this consultation is to seek a wide range of views on the Director of Public Prosecution’s (DPP’s) recently published interim guidance on assisted suicide.

CPS consultation page


See also: Assisted suicide

Joint Committee on Human Rights, 'Reform of the DOLS inquiry' (call for evidence from 9/2/18 to 2/3/18) Consultation

Extract from website: "The Committee is issuing an open call for evidence from interested parties and would welcome written submissions by Friday 2 March on: (1) Whether the Law Commission's proposals for Liberty Protection Safeguards strike the correct balance between adequate protection for human rights with the need for a scheme which is less bureaucratic and onerous than the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards; (2) Whether the Government should proceed to implement the proposals for Liberty Protection Safeguards as a matter of urgency; (3) Whether a definition of deprivation of liberty for care and treatment should be debated by Parliament and set out in statute. Submissions should be no more than 1500 words."

Law Commission, 'Mental Capacity and Deprivation of Liberty' (consultation from 7/5/15 to 2/11/15) Consultation

"On 7 July 2015 we opened a consultation on the law of mental capacity and deprivation of liberty. The consultation is now closed. We expect to publish a final report with our recommendations and a draft Bill in 2016."

Legal Aid consultation: refocusing on priority cases (2009) Consultation

"This paper sets out proposals for reforming the legal aid rules to ensure that limited resources are focused on priority cases. The changes proposed include strengthening public interest considerations in deciding whether to grant civil legal aid; ceasing to provide funding for low priority civil and criminal matters, where issues can be resolved instead through complaints procedures or ombudsman schemes; restricting access to civil legal aid for those not resident in the UK; and notifying the other side when civil legal aid is applied for to discourage fraudulent applications."

CLS News: Important changes to the Funding Code - 1/4/10

Response to consultation - Feb 2010

Consultation documents on MoJ website

Consultation summary on LSC website

Legal aid: funding reforms (2009) Consultation

Responses published 16/12/09.

Response re experts' fees published 3/3/10. See bottom of consultation page and:

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.



  • 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.§
Ministry of Justice, 'Reconsideration of Parole Board decisions: Creating a new and open system' (consultation from 28/4/18 to 28/7/18) Consultation

"This paper considers and seeks views on the proposed parameters for and operation of the proposed reconsideration process, with respect to: (1) which types of decisions should be reconsidered; (2) who should be able to apply for reconsideration of a decision; (3) on what basis a decision should be reconsidered; (4) how we can make the process transparent whilst also ensuring there are sufficient safeguards to protect panel members, victims and others."

Ministry of Justice, 'Revising the Mental Capacity Act 2005 Code of Practice: Call for evidence' (consultation from 24/1/19 to 7/3/19) Consultation

Extract: "Since the MCA came into force in 2007, the COP has been used extensively by a wide range of stakeholders. In light of changes in case law, and lessons learned through practical use of the COP over the past 11 years, revision of the COP is required in order to better reflect current needs. The Act itself is currently not under review, however the survey below provides an opportunity to comment on the practical guidance outlined in the COP. Comments received will inform decisions to revise, update and where relevant to provide further guidance in the COP."

Ministry of Justice, 'Transforming our justice system' (consultation from 15/9/16 to 27/10/16) Consultation

The main proposal relevant to the MHT is an amendment (a) providing that a tribunal panel in the First-tier Tribunal is to consist of a single member unless otherwise determined by the Senior President of Tribunals, and (b) removing the existing requirement to consider the arrangements that were in place before the tribunal transferred into the unified system.

Consultation proposals

The following three principles and aims are taken from the first, overview chapter. (1) Proportionate: (a) More use of case officers for routine tasks, (b) More decisions made 'on the papers', (c) More virtual hearings, (d) More cases resolved out of court. (2) Accessible: (a) Putting probate applications online, (b) Managing divorce online, (c) Digitising applications for Lasting Powers of Attorney. (3) Just: (a) Provide a system that works for everyone, (b) Continue to ensure open justice. In relation to LPAs, it states: "Allowing people to make arrangements for a time in the future when they may not be able to make decisions by themselves is a helpful but often emotionally stressful process. Applications have been partially digitised since 2014, resulting in fewer application forms being returned because of errors. We will build on this by making the system fully digital to deliver a quicker service."

Chapters 2-5 relate to Criminal, Civil, Family, and Tribunals. The following are the aims in relation to tribunals: (a) Streamlining procedures and encouraging a balanced approach, (b) Digitising the Social Security and Child Support Tribunal, (c) Simplifying panel composition, (d) Reforming employment tribunals. In relation to panel composition it states: "Another factor in taking a balanced, tailored approach to tribunal cases is making sure the panels that make decisions in tribunals are designed to best suit the circumstances of the case. Most tribunals currently reflect historic arrangements that may be out of date and do not tailor the expertise of the panel according to the case. We propose to revise the current arrangements for setting panel composition to make sure that that appropriate expertise is focussed on those cases that need it. We would welcome views on how best to achieve this – more details are available later in Chapter 7.3."

Chapter 6 states that views are invited on three specific elements: (a) Assisted digital facilities, (b) Online conviction and statutory fixed fine, and (c) Panel composition in the tribunals.

The following are extracts from chapter 7.3: "As we streamline the tribunals system, we need to be more tailored and flexible in the way that non legal members are used. Panel composition will remain a matter for the Senior President of Tribunals (SPT), but we want to move away from a blanket approach of using non-legal members regardless of whether their specialist expertise and knowledge is relevant or required. Instead, they should only be part of the panel where their presence is relevant to the case. ... The terms of the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal (Composition of Tribunal) Order 2008 allow the SPT to set the composition of tribunal panels in the unified system via Practice Statements. ... Some change has already been introduced by way of revised Practice Statements, and has not been shown to have any negative effects on decisions. ... We therefore propose to amend the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal (Composition of Tribunal) Order 2008 to give the SPT greater freedom to adopt a more proportionate and flexible approach to panel composition, by: (a) Providing that a tribunal panel in the First-tier Tribunal is to consist of a single member unless otherwise determined by the SPT, and (b) Removing the existing requirement to consider the arrangements that were in place before the tribunal transferred into the unified system. ... The use of multiple panel members in the unified tribunals currently costs the taxpayer around £21m per year in fees alone, with daily fees for each member ranging from £200 - £500, plus additional costs for travel and subsistence, training, appraisal and general administration. By using NLMs in a more tailored, flexible way, we can make sure that more people in the tribunals will benefit from their specialist expertise and knowledge, while delivering better value for the taxpayer."

The questions in chapter 7.3 in relation to the last element are: (a) "Question 7: Do you agree that the SPT should be able to determine panel composition based on the changing needs of people using the tribunal system? Please state your reasons." (b) "Question 8: In order to assist the SPT to make sure that appropriate expertise is provided following the proposed reform, which factors do you think should be considered to determine whether multiple specialists are needed to hear individual cases? Please state your reasons and specify the jurisdictions and/or types of case to which these factors refer."

Government response

In the consultation document it was proposed to amend the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal (Composition of Tribunal) Order 2008 to give the Senior President of Tribunals (SPT) "greater freedom to adopt a more proportionate and flexible approach to panel composition", by (a) providing that a tribunal panel in the First-tier Tribunal is to consist of a single member unless otherwise determined by the SPT; and (b) removing the existing requirement to consider the arrangements that were in place before the tribunal transferred into the unified system.

Following the consultation, the government will proceed with proposal (b) as the existing requirement is "an unnecessary restriction to the SPT to base decisions on what is the most appropriate and proportionate approach", but will not proceed with proposal (a) because of concerns arising from "the assumption that this will apply in all cases" (although it appears that this concession is not intended to make any difference in practice). To this end, the Order will be amended so that that "the SPT may provide that a panel should consist of one, two or three members, as required, in order to determine the matters before the tribunal justly and fairly". The consultation response envisages that the SPT will consult with both the tribunal judiciary and wider stakeholders before making any changes to panel composition.


New Horizons consultation Consultation

"Good mental health is fundamental to the well-being and prosperity of England. In the last decade, greater investment and reforms have transformed mental health care, but now we need to go further. We need to target the root causes of mental illness and support the local development of higher quality, more personalised services."

No voice unheard, no right ignored - a consultation for people with learning disabilities, autism and mental health conditions Consultation

Extract from consultation page (paragraphs replaced with numbering): "(1) The consultation ‘No voice unheard, no right ignored’ explores options on issues such as how people can: (a) be supported to live independently, as part of a community; (b) be assured that their views will be listened to; (c) challenge decisions about them and about their care; (d) exercise control over the support they receive with a Personal Health Budget; (e) expect that different health and local services will organise themselves around their needs; (f) know that professionals are looking out for their physical health needs as well as their mental health needs. (2) The document also seeks to explores views on a number of issues relating to the Mental Health Act which were raised during the recent consultation on the revised Mental Health Act Code of Practice. (3) Since ‘Transforming Care: A National Response to Winterbourne View Hospital’ was published there have been some improvements but the system has not gone far enough fast enough to respond to the needs and wishes of people who need services, and their families."

Office of the Public Guardian: Amendments to secondary legislation - consultation Consultation

"This consultation paper represents the next step in the review process of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and addresses areas of legislation and policy that in practice have not worked as well as intended. The proposed changes will help the Act meet its aims and objectives. The OPG intends to implement them on the 1 April 2010 and is now seeking views."

Office of the Public Guardian: Call for evidence: Not for profit delivery of deputyship services Consultation

The paper cites the 'Big Society' concept. The introduction states that 'Not for profit delivery of deputyship services has three purposes: (1) to understand the reasons behind the low take up amongst not-for-profit organisations of deputyship work; (2) to benchmark the costs of providing deputyship services within the sector; (3) to test interest in such organisations providing personal welfare deputyships in the future.' The appendix shows that the hope is to get the same service for approximately half the price of sa solicitor deputy.

Office of the Public Guardian, 'Call for evidence: Not for profit delivery of deputyship services' (4/8/11)

Catherine Baksi, 'OPG calls for more use of non-lawyers to avoid "costly legal solutions"' (9/8/11)

Proposals for reform of civil litigation funding and costs in England and Wales Consultation

"This consultation seeks views on implementing a package of Lord Justice Jackson's proposals for reforming conditional fee agreements and other aspects of civil litigation funding and costs."

Consultation page

Press release: Clarke unveils plans for radical reform of justice - 15/11/10

Consultation document

Proposals for the Reform of Legal Aid in England and Wales (2010) Consultation

"This consultation seeks views on proposals for reform of legal aid in England and Wales. The proposals represent a radical, wide-ranging and ambitious programme of reform which aims to ensure that legal aid is targeted to those who need it most, for those cases in which legal advice or representation is justified. This consultation is aimed at providers of publicly funded legal services and others with an interest in the justice system."

In relation to mental health law the proposals are to (1) retain legal aid for mental health and capacity detention cases, including appeals to the First-tier (Mental Health) Tribunal, and onward appeals to the Upper Tribunal, and appeal as to the Court of Protection on deprivation of liberty issues; (2) retain legal aid for judicial review challenges; (3) remove legal aid for tort or other general damages claims unless the claims are of a very serious nature (paras 4.92 to 4.94). The summary for the scope of mental health law is that 'We propose to retain the current provision of Legal Help and Controlled Legal Representation' (Annex F). All civil hourly rates and fixed fees are to be reduced by 10% (para 7.6 to 7.7) and there are also proposals for reducing experts' fees (see chapter 8). There are less generous rules on financial eligibility and contributions, but these proposals will not affect those cases, such as Tribunal work, which are not subject to means testing (para 5.4).

Consultation page

Press release: Clarke unveils plans for radical reform of justice - 15/11/10

Consultation document

Ministry of Justice, 'Reform of Legal Aid in England and Wales: the Government Response' (Cm 8072, June 2011). Other related documents are also available. Some points particularly relevant to mental health law are: (1) There will be a 10% cut in all civil fees, including mental health law (para 34). (2) Advice and representation under the MHA 1983 or MCA 2005 will remain in scope (para 86). However claims involving tort or other general damages claims will be excluded except where these meet the criteria for 'claims against public authorities' or 'claims arising out of allegations of the abuse of a child or vulnerable adult, or allegations of sexual assault' (para 87). The 'claims against public authorities' criteria allow legal advice and representation for claims (typically claims for damages) against public authorities concerning 'abuse of position or power' or 'significant breach of human rights' (no longer for 'serious wrong-doing') (para 10ff). (3) Legal aid will remain available for judicial review and habeas corpus (subject to immaterial exceptions) (para 88ff).

See also: Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill 2011

Proposals on changes to the Office of the Public Guardian fees Consultation

'A consultation on the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) fees 2011/2012 which aims to ensure that the OPG fee policy remains fair, equitable and proportionate to the services being provided whilst at the same time reflecting the current economic climate. The proposed changes will help ensure that the fee structure remains fair and equitable whilst fully covering OPG costs. We are now seeking your views.' (MOJ website).

The proposals are listed on the OPG website as:

  • Raising the LPA Application to Register fee from £120 to £130;
  • Implementing a new 'Resubmission Fee' of £65 each time an LPA is resubmitted to the OPG within 3 months of it being returned to the Applicant as invalid;
  • Discontinuing the production of LPA office copies by the OPG, except in extreme and limited circumstances, and for a £50 fee;
  • Removing the Application to Search the Registers fee;
  • Replacing Type 1, 2A and 2 supervision fees with a flat fee of £320 and introducing an administration fee of £35 for those in type 3 requiring the de minimis level of supervision;
  • Raising the maximum threshold of capital for those cases qualifying for Type 3 supervision from £16,000 to £21,000 over a period of 4 years;
  • Introducing a new Fee Remissions policy of 50% for those who have a gross income of up to £12,000;
  • Allowing the Public Guardian to vary the levels of fees payable in the future, examples of which could be:
  • Implementing a new discounted fee for any LPA applications that are submitted together;
  • Removing or discounting the LPA registration fee for Armed Service Personnel
  • Renaming a number of OPG fees in order to make it clearer what they cover.

MOJ consultation page

OPG news item

Ministry of Justice, 'Office of the Public Guardian - fees 2011/2012: Consultation paper' (CP 16/10, 28/2/11)

Public Guardian (Fees, etc.) (Amendment) Regulations 2011

See also: MCA Update emails

Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates - consultation Consultation

This discussion paper sets out the LSC's proposed future minimum quality requirements for purchasing criminal advocacy services. The focus is on crime but the intention is for quality assurance schemes to apply to all areas of law.

Review of NHS complaints system Consultation

Dept of Health, 'Review of NHS complaints system' (press release, 15/3/13). The review will be encouraged to make recommendations about: (a) any aspect of the NHS complaints arrangements and other means by which patients make concerns known; (b) the way that organisations receive and act on concerns and complaints; (c) how Boards and managers carry out their functions; (d) the process by which individual organisations are held to account for the way that they handle concerns and complaints. Contact details are provided for anyone wishing to submit evidence. Review begins 15/3/13 and is due to report by 30/7/13.

Rosa Silverman, 'NHS complaints system review launched' (Telegraph, 15/3/13)

Review of the Operation of Sections 135 and 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983 in England and Wales: A Survey Consultation

"The government is reviewing the operation of Sections 135 and 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983 in England and Wales to make sure that the legislative framework offers the right support for people at the right time. These parts of the legislation give the police powers to temporarily remove people who appear to be suffering from a mental disorder and who need urgent care to a ‘place of safety’, so that a mental health assessment can be carried out and appropriate arrangements made for their care. A place of safety in the majority of cases is a hospital, but sometimes police stations are used. However, there have been questions over whether a police station is an appropriate place to detain people suffering a mental health crisis, especially young people, and whether the maximum length of detention under Sections 135 and 136 (72 hours) is too long. This review will examine the evidence to determine whether or not changes to the primary legislation would improve outcomes for people experiencing a mental health crisis."

Consultation page

Department of Health and Home Office, 'Review of the Operation of Sections 135 and 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983: Review Report and Recommendations' (December 2014)

The consultation page also contains an executive summary, an easy read version, a summary of responses and a literature review.

Safeguarding adults: a consultation on the review of the ‘No Secrets’ guidance Consultation

"The Department of Health, the Home Office and the Ministry of Justice have launched the national consultation on the review of the No Secrets guidance. Minister for Care Services; Phil Hope MP said: 'This consultation paper is about learning. It is about how we as a society learn to empower people - both the public and the professionals - to identify risk and manage risk. It is about how we empower people to say no to abusive situations and criminal behaviour. It is about locating safeguarding in the wider agenda of choice and control. It is about recognising safeguarding as everyone's business. It is about identifying the tools we need for better safeguarding.'

"The consultation is for everyone - it has questions for social workers, and housing officers, for police officers and for lawyers. It has questions for members of the public and for service users."

Summary of responses published 17/7/09. Government response to follow

See Care Act 2014 for consultation response.

Safety and Security Directions - High Secure Psychiatric Services consultation Consultation

"The aim of this consultation is to gather views on the proposed revision of The High Security Psychiatric Services (Arrangements for Safety and Security at Ashworth, Broadmoor and Rampton Hospitals) Directions 2009 and associated guidance, by inviting the views of key stakeholders"

Consultation page

Senior President of Tribunals, 'Proposal to amend Composition Statements' (18/2/20) Consultation

Proposed reduction on tribunal panel sizes (not MHT)

This consultation relates to the General Regulatory Chamber, the Social Entitlement Chamber, the Property Chamber and the Health, Education and Social Care Chamber (SEND, Primary Health Lists and Care Standards cases only - not MHT). Consultation closes 14/4/20.

Sentencing Council, 'Sentencing offenders with mental health conditions or disorders consultation' (consultation from 9/4/19 to 9/7/19) Consultation

"The Sentencing Council is issuing a new consultation on its proposed guideline on sentencing offenders with mental health conditions or disorders."

Specialist Support Services consultation Consultation

The LSC is consulting on their proposal to discontinue funding for the Specialist Support Service, as a result of conceding a judicial review of their decision to do so.

The specialist support service for mental health is run by Scott Moncrieff Solicitors, and is available from Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm, on 0844 800 3364.

Following the consultation process the LSC has decided to discontinue the Specialist Support Service. Contracts will end on 6/7/12.

Consultation page

Legal Aid Handbook Blog, 'LSC concede judicial review; specialist support reprieved' (1/3/12)

Legal Aid Handbook Blog, 'Weekly round up' (1/4/12)

SSHSC, LC and SSJ, 'Reforming the Mental Health Act' (CP 355, 2021, consultation from 13/1/21 to 21/4/21) White Paper Consultation

White Paper on MHA reform

"It is two years since Professor Sir Simon Wessely delivered his landmark Independent Review of the Mental Health Act. ... We accept, and we will take forward, the vast majority of its recommendations for change. ... The changes are based on 4 principles that have been developed with people with lived experience of the MHA. They are: (1) choice and autonomy - ensuring service users’ views and choices are respected; (2) least restriction - ensuring the MHA’s powers are used in the least restrictive way; (3) therapeutic benefit - ensuring patients are supported to get better, so they can be discharged from the MHA; (4) the person as an individual - ensuring patients are viewed and treated as individuals."

Swine flu and temporary MHA amendments Consultation

Pandemic influenza and the Mental Health Act 1983: consultation on proposed changes to the Mental Health Act 1983 and its associated secondary legislation.

"You are invited to comment on proposals for temporary amendments to the Mental Health Act 1983 which may be required in the event of the severe staff shortages that may be expected during an influenza pandemic. You are invited to say whether you think these proposals are likely to be helpful. Please let us know if there are any significant issues which you think we should have included, or if we have included anything unnecessary."

Consultation page

Law Society response - 14/10/09

Dept of Health, 'Pandemic Influenza and the Mental Health Act 1983: Response to Consultation on Proposed Changes to the Mental Health Act 1983 and its Associated Secondary Legislation' (29/7/11). The Government have concluded that all of the proposed temporary amendments (and further amendments to s5) would be an appropriate part of a package of contingency measures. The proposals requiring legislative changes are: (1) Allowing just one medical recommendation on an application by an AMHP for someone to be detained under sections 2 or 3 of the 1983 Act. (2) To facilitate C1 above, preparing special forms A2A and A6A for use by a doctor making a single medical recommendation. (3) Changing the number of doctors involved in decisions to transfer people from prison to hospital under Part 3 of the 1983 Act. (4) Suspending the obligation to obtain SOAD opinions on medication. (5). Suspending time limits on conveying people and admitting them to hospital under Part 3. (6). Suspending time limits on warrants for transferring people from prison to hospital. (7) Giving courts discretion to renew remands under the 1983 Act beyond the normal 12 week maximum. (8) Allowing SHAs the flexibility to approve former RMOs and former approved clinicians to be temporary approved clinicians. (9) Allowing SHAs the flexibility to approve current section 12 doctors who have not previously acted as RMOs to be temporary approved clinicians (10) Allowing local social services authorities the flexibility to approve former ASWs and former AMHPs to be temporary AMHPs. (11) Seeking a three-month transitional period for SOAD second opinions. (12) If there should be a large number of staff deaths, keeping the contingency measures for temporarily approved AMHPs and approved clinicians in place until fully trained replacements can be approved. (13) Extending the periods of emergency detention permitted under section 5(2) (emergency detention of a hospital in-patient by a doctor or approved clinician) from up to 72 hours to up to 120 hours. (14) Extending the periods of emergency detention permitted under section 5(4) (emergency detention of a hospital in-patient by a nurse with special expertise in mental health or learning disability) from up to 6 hours to up to 12 hours. (15) Allowing any approved clinician or registered medical practitioner to detain a hospital in-patient under section 5(2) rather than just the one in charge of the case. (16) To facilitate C15 above, preparing special form H1A for use by an approved clinician or doctor who is not in charge of the case.

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

Transforming Legal Aid: Delivering a more credible and efficient system - consultation Consultation

This consultation sets out the Government's proposals for further reform of the legal aid system in England and Wales.

One proposal is a residence test. Under the proposed residence test, civil Legal Aid would only be available to those who are lawfully resident (in the UK, Crown Dependencies or British Overseas Territories) at the time the application for civil Legal Aid was made, and also had been so resident for a continuous period of at least 12 months at any point in the past. There will be some exceptions to the residence test. One exception is for 'detention cases', in specified areas including mental health (see para 125 of Annex B to the government response).

Consultation page

Ministry of Justice, 'Transforming legal aid: delivering a more credible and efficient system' (consultation paper CP14/2013, 9/4/13)

Ministry of Justice, 'Transforming Legal Aid: Next Steps' (5/9/13)

Annex B to response

Tribunal Procedure Committee, 'Consultation on possible amendments to the Tribunal Procedure (First-Tier Tribunal) (Health, Education and Social Care Chamber) Rules 2008 on the timescale for listing Section 2 hearings' (from 11/2/20 to 7/4/20) Consultation

Tribunal rules consultation

The TPC seeks answers to the following questions: (1) Do you agree that the requirement should be that the First-tier Tribunal lists all section 2 hearings within 10 days from receipt of the application notice rather than 7 days? (2) Do you have any other comments on this proposal?

Tribunal Procedure Committee, 'Proposal to amend the Tribunal Procedure (First-Tier Tribunal) (Health, Education and Social Care Chamber) Rules 2008' (consultation from 22/3/18 to 11/6/18) Consultation

The MOJ, with support from the senior HESC judiciary, proposed that: (1) preliminary medical examinations should be abolished; and (2) mandatory references for adult patients, unless a party requests or the tribunal directs an oral hearing, should be determined by a paper review procedure. Following consultation, the Tribunal Procedure Committee roundly rejected the proposal.

Consultation documents

Papers released under the Freedom of Information Act

This document, together with Phillip Sycamore, Mark Hinchliffe and Joan Rutherford, 'Representations to the Tribunals Procedure Committee from the Chamber President, Deputy Chamber President and Chief Medical Member (HESC)' (undated, probably late 2017), were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by the charity Rethink Mental Illness. They relate to the proposal to abolish pre-hearing examinations and have paper reviews in certain cases. They provide information on the rationale behind the proposals which was omitted from the final version of the consultation document - mainly saving money and promoting flexibility in panel composition (judge-only hearings, including for all s2 cases, and judge-only paper reviews, including for many reference cases).


Download: File

Type: Document🔍

Title: Extracts from the Minutes of the Tribunal Procedure Committee

Author: Tribunal Procedure Committee🔍

Date: 7/3/18🔍

What links here:


This document, together with Tribunal Procedure Committee, 'Extracts from the Minutes of the Tribunal Procedure Committee' (4/10/17 to 7/3/18), were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by the charity Rethink Mental Illness. They relate to the proposal to abolish pre-hearing examinations and have paper reviews in certain cases. They provide information on the rationale behind the proposals which was omitted from the final version of the consultation document - mainly saving money and promoting flexibility in panel composition (judge-only hearings, including for all s2 cases, and judge-only paper reviews, including for many reference cases).


Download: File

Type: Document🔍

Title: Representations to the Tribunals Procedure Committee from the Chamber President, Deputy Chamber President and Chief Medical Member (HESC)

Author: Sycamore, Phillip🔍 · Hinchliffe, Mark🔍 · Rutherford, Joan🔍

Publication: Mental Health Tribunal🔍

Date: 2017🔍

What links here:


TPC Minutes

Minutes of 6/6/18 meeting, including discussions about proposed rule changes (relating to pre-hearing examinations and paper hearings) and litigation friends.


3. HSW Sub-group

Mental Health Tribunal (MHT) Proposals for Reform

3.1 The TPC public consultation was due to end on the 14 June 2018. To date, the TPC Secretariat has received 64 replies to this consultation.

3.2 PR advised the attendees that the Secretariat had received a second Freedom of Information (FOI) request regarding the recent TPC consultation for procedural reform to the MHT.

3.3 CM thanked the MoJ Policy attendees for the update paper that had been circulated to the HSWSG and TPC detailing parliamentary interest in the TPC consultation on changes to the Mental Health Tribunal and a summary of the 3 parliamentary questions received to date.

3.4 CM said that the HSWSG would convene a meeting during July to consider the replies after the TPC consultation closed on the 14 June.

3.5 MoJ Policy asked CM whether she would be prepared to meet with the Mental Health Act Review Team evaluating the Mental Health Act 1983 to discuss the TPC consultation. CM said that she was willing to attend a meeting with the review team as they were considering the existing powers and procedures of MHTs and that the objectives of the TPC consultation overlapped with the purpose of the review, i.e., how the legislation is used and how practice can improve in the MHT.


6. Litigation Friends

6.1 The TPC Secretary said that following the workshop held on the 25 April he had been working to produce process maps for: the definition of a ‘Litigation Friend’, the potential role of the Official Solicitor in proceedings, pressure points, financial considerations and the role of legal professionals.

6.2 The TPC Secretary said he anticipated that the exercise to finalise the process maps should be completed by September and that he would at that time produce a submission to the Minister with recommendations. PR asked the TPC Secreatary to provide a further progress update at the TPC September meeting.

AP/35/18: To provide an update for the Litigation Friends topic for the TPC September meeting. –TPC Secretary


Download: URL

Type: Document<span class="plainlinks" ..→§

|Type=Document |Title=Minutes |Author=Tribunal Procedure Committee |Abstract=Minutes of 25/7/18 meeting, including the news that the proposals to abolish pre-hearing medical examinations and to reduce the number of oral hearings had been abandoned (the context for this included the ongoing MHA review, Rethink's FOI requests and the overwhelmingly negative response to the consultation). |Detail===Extract== 4. HSW Sub-group (HSWSG)

Mental Health Tribunal (MHT): Proposals for Rule changes

4.1 The TPC public consultation had considered 1) abolishing Pre-Hearing Examinations and 2) enabling judges to make more decisions on the papers without an oral hearing. CM said that the consultation had ended on the 14 June 2018. The TPC Secretariat received approximately 200 replies. A HSWSG meeting had been held on the 18 July to consider the replies, and a schedule of the replies prepared by the TPC Secretariat had been circulated to members of the TPC.

4.2 CM said that she had attended a meeting on 19 July 2018 with the independent team conducting the review of the Mental Health Act 1983. The purpose of the Review is to consider how practice could be improved in the MHT for service users and professionals. The attendees included Professor Sir Simon Wessely (review Chair) and Alex Keene (review legal advisor) and government officials.

4.3 PR said that the TPC Secretariat had replied to the second Freedom of Information request regarding the recent TPC consultation for procedural reform to the MHT.

4.4 CM thanked the MoJ Policy attendees for the update paper that had been circulated to the HSWSG and TPC. The paper detailed the Parliamentary interest in the TPC consultation and also provided a summary.

4.5 KS joined the meeting as a guest and answered questions from the TPC members in relation to the two proposed changes to MHT rules. PR thanked KS for his assistance in clarifying the issues. (KS left the TPC meeting).

4.6 The TPC noted that the consultees were overwhelmingly opposed to the rule changes. After full discussion and reference to the reasons given in various consultation responses, the TPC agreed that it would not be appropriate to make either of the proposed rule changes.

4.7 CM said that she would start preparing a draft response. The plan was to have a draft which the TPC would consider at their next scheduled meeting, with the aim for the TPC to publish its response in the autumn.

AP/40/18: To prepare a draft response for the 04 October TPC meeting. - CM§


One interesting response, of many, is this from an MHT judge: "If cases are decided on papers alone, I can see little point in having those cases referred to the Tribunal. I have done a number of paper hearings and they are unsatisfactory." The TPC noted the following points and in consequence rejected the proposed rule changes: (1) The PHE provides for greater participation in the process by the patient. (2) The PHE reduces stress and anxiety at the hearing for the patient who will not need to be asked distressing questions. (3) The PHE allows the patient to talk about their situation privately to a person not involved in their detention. (4) The PHE allows for information missing from reports to be picked up. (5) The PHE is a lesser cost to the public purse than independent psychiatric reports. (6) The High Court has confirmed that there is no reason why the MM cannot carry out a PHE, provided the findings are disclosed at the outset of the hearing as they are currently. (7) Having a second medical opinion to assist the panel reduces the possibility of the wrong decision being made, thus reducing the risk to both the patient and the general public. (8) The system in England is not comparable to the Scottish system which operates in a fundamentally different way. (9) In Wales PHEs are carried out in every case and there are no current plans to alter that. (10) The outcome of MHTs cannot be measured by the numbers discharged but by whether the patient and their representative are satisfied that the case has been properly scrutinised with all relevant evidence before it. (11) Those who have their cases referred to the MHT are the most vulnerable members of society, often lacking the mental capacity to make an application to the MHT. (12) Disposals without a hearing would mean that the MHT panel would have evidence from only one party. (13) The MHT panel would not have adequate information to decide whether an oral hearing is appropriate. (14) There are a significant number of examples of MHTs reaching a decision on referred cases based on evidence that came out at the hearing and not contained in the reports.


The TPC's Reply

69.The TPC has given careful consideration to the responses. We of course afford great respect to the views of the Chamber President, the then Deputy Chamber President and Chief Medical Member. However, given the overwhelming response against any change, supported by cogent reasons and evidence of direct experience, the TPC is not persuaded that it is appropriate to make the proposed changes.

70.It is clear that almost all of those who responded, including some large representative organisations and including those on the “other side of the table”, being NHS Trusts or the Royal College of Psychiatrists, believe that the PHE does add value to the MHT. It provides a second, independent psychiatric opinion. is also clear that the majority of MHT panel ..→§

Unfitness to Plead and the Insanity Defence consultation Consultation

"Our recommendations focus on a new legal test for determining whether a person is unfit to plead and reform of the section 4A hearing which follows a finding that an accused is unfit to plead. The proposals seek to bring the criminal law into line with modern psychiatric understanding and the approach of the civil law to capacity – both in the civil common law and under the Mental Capacity Act 2005."

Unfitness to plead consultation Consultation

"We are now reviewing our provisional proposals in light of the consultation responses, and taking into account the changes to the criminal justice system since we produced the consultation paper in October 2010. ... These further questions address issues such as: (1) How should special measures to enhance the defendant’s ability to participate in trial be fairly incorporated into the test for unfitness? (2) Should the procedure in the magistrates’ and youth courts mirror that in the Crown Court? (3) What should the process be for dealing with a defendant when he or she has been found unfit to plead? (4) At a hearing to deal with a defendant found unfit, what issues should be considered by the court? (5) What options should the court have in dealing with unfit defendants?"

Violent Offender Order (Information About Release or Transfer) Regulations consultation Consultation

"Violent Offender Orders (VOOs) were introduced on 3 August 2009 as part of the government’s commitment to do more to protect the public from violent offenders. They are civil preventative orders which the police can use to place controls on violent offenders in circumstances where they could potentially pose the greatest danger to the public. The VOO (information about release or transfer) Regulations will make it a legal requirement for responsible bodies, including mental health services (where an individual is detained under part 3 of the Mental Health Act 1983), to notify the police service or the receiving institution if an offender subject to a VOO is to be released or transferred from their care.

"We are consulting to seek views specifically of mental health service providers on the extent to which they may be affected by the proposals contained within the regulations and to establish what support they would need from the Home Office to enable them to comply with the new duty to notify. Within the consultation paper we are proposing to develop a short guide and/or standard template to enable hospitals to more easily comply with the proposed duty to notify and the consultation seeks the view of mental health services on this."


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