April 2018 chronology
See April 2018 update for a thematic summary of these changes.
- 30/04/18 (1): Job advert. Plymouth Defence Solicitors, Plymouth - Mental Health Supervisor (listed until 31/7/18). See Jobs
- 27/04/18 (2): Homelessness case. WB v W District Council  EWCA Civ 928 — "This appeal is about when a person who is homeless and suffers from mental illness may apply for housing under Part VII of the Housing Act 1996. ... The difficulty for the appellant in this case, WB, is that it has been held she does not have capacity to make the decisions necessary to complete the process of applying for accommodation as a homeless person. In 1993, the House of Lords held that a homeless person with mental disabilities, who could not understand the choices she had to make when offered accommodation, could not be treated as a person in priority need..."
- 27/04/18 (1): Old Ian Brady case. R v Press Complaints Commission, ex parte Ian Stewart-Brady  EWCA Civ 986 — "This is a renewed application for leave to apply for judicial review in relation to an adjudication of the Press Complaints Commission. ... The application arises out of a publication in The Sun newspaper on 26 July 1995. The publication contained an article relating to the applicant, Ian Brady, who was convicted of murder and is now a patient at the Ashworth Hospital. The effect of the article was that he was being treated in a way which was wholly inappropriate having regard to the very serious crimes which he had committed. No complaint, however, is made about the article. Although Mr Beloff certainly does not approve of its contents, he accepts that he cannot say that there was any justification for complaining about the article. His complaint is that the article has alongside it a substantial photograph of the applicant, albeit a photograph which is indistinct and does not show Mr Brady clearly. ... Looking at the matter as a whole, I do not think there is any prospect of this application succeeding and therefore I would dismiss it."
- 26/04/18 (1): Deprivation of liberty case. Buckinghamshire County Council v RT  EWCOP 12 — "I am concerned with a young man who is now 17 ½ years old and who I shall refer to as RT in this judgement. ... RT's behavioural issues are such that it is no longer safe for him at home with his adoptive parents and siblings. The local authority have therefore applied under the Mental Capacity Act 2005 for an order pursuant to section 4 and 16 of that act to deprive RT of his liberty so that he may be placed at [a place]. The arrangements for his care at that placement involve 2:1 supervision during the day and one to one at night. ... Is clear that the arrangements set out in the care plan amounts to a deprivation of liberty within the 'Storck' and Cheshire West cases. The level of supervision described is far in excess of that which might be applied to even the most unruly 17-year-old in a domestic setting. It clearly amounts to continuous supervision and control. ... It is very clear that it is RT's best interests to remain in an environment in which he can be protected from his own impulsivity and where others are protected. The very high levels of supervision are necessary and proportionate in the particular circumstances of this case. He needs intensive support and therapeutic input in order to reduce the risks he faces. This will not be a short-term recess but is likely to take months if not years. I therefore will make a deprivation of liberty order for one year. RT's 18th birthday is clearly a milestone for any teenager but I think has particular significance for RT. I will therefore list a review shortly before his 18th birthday which in particular will enable him to have a say at that point."
- 21/04/18 (1): Parole Board delay case. LV v UK 50718/16  MHLO 22 — "Complaint: The applicant complains under Article 5(4) of the Convention that she did not have a speedy review of the legality of her detention. In particular, she contends that her right to a speedy review was violated both by delays on the part of the Public Protection Casework Section and the Parole Board, and from the unnecessary two-stage Tribunal/Parole Board process. Question to the Parties: Was the review of the applicant’s detention which commenced on 24 May 2011 and concluded on 21 March 2013 conducted 'speedily' within the meaning of Article 5(4) of the Convention?" (The first paragraph of the decision is wrong as the applicant's solicitor works for Campbell Law Solicitors.)
- 20/04/18 (4): Newsletter. Mind, 'Legal Newsletter' (March 2018) — This newsletter contains news under the following headings: (1) Brick by Brick; (2) Chief Constable of Norfolk v Coffey UKEAT/0260/16/BA; (3) DL-H v West London Mental Health Trust & Another !; (4) JMcG v Devon Partnership NHS !; (5) Mind research - the impact of legal aid cuts on people with mental health problems; (6) Leaving hospital; briefing on discharge from mental health inpatient services; (7) Monitoring the Mental Health Act: 2016/17.
- 20/04/18 (3): Covert medication case. M v Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board  UKUT 120 (AAC) — The tribunal had failed to turn its mind to the extent to which (despite his lack of capacity to conduct proceedings) the patient was capable of participating in proceedings before addressing the test for non-disclosure. The appeal was allowed and the matter remitted to the tribunal to re-make its decision.
- 20/04/18 (2): Medical treatment case. NHS Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead CCG v SP (Withdrawal of CANH)  EWCOP 11 — "Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead CCG have applied to the court for a personal welfare order in respect of SP. The order sought is for a Declaration and Order that it is not in SP's best interests for Clinically Assisted Nutrition and Hydration (CANH) to be continued. In tandem with the withdrawal of CANH palliative care will be provided. The consequence is an expectation that SP will die within 7-14 days. ... In early 2015 she was diagnosed as being in a continuing vegetative state and in April 2015 as being in a permanent vegetative state (PVS). She has been in receipt of CANH since October 2014."
- 20/04/18 (1): Law Society panel concerns cont'd. Law Society mental health accreditation scheme - guidance documents. This page contains links to what is believed to be every version of the guidance documents dated from December 2011 to October 2017 inclusive (plus an old document from May 2002). The creation dates are taken from the PDF files. The download dates relate to when a version was downloaded from the Law Society website. At any time only one version was available for download. Publication dates can be assumed to lie somewhere between the creation date (or, if later, the download date for a previous version) and the download date inclusive. Further notes will be added - in particular, setting out how the requirements changed in each version.
- 15/04/18 (2): Job advert. Bishop & Light Solicitors, Hove - Court of Protection Solicitor (listed until 13 July 2018). See Jobs
- 15/04/18 (1): Book chapter uploaded. Larry Gostin, Mental Health Services: Law and Practice (Shaw & Sons, supplement issue no 18, June 2000). Chapter 20 - The therapeutic relationship: treatment and confidentiality. See Gostin
- 10/04/18 (1): Sentence appeal case. R v Thompson  EWCA Crim 639 — "These four otherwise unconnected appeals have been listed together as each potentially raises an issue in relation to the effect of s11(3) of the Criminal Appeal Act 1968 which requires this court, on an appeal against sentence, to exercise its powers such that 'taking the case as a whole, the appellant is not more severely dealt with on appeal than he was dealt with by the court below'. Articulating the issue with reference to the specific sentences that may give rise to the issue, it is about the extent to which this court can substitute what is a standard determinate sentence with (i) a special custodial sentence for offenders of particular concern under s236A of the Criminal Justice Act 2003; (ii) an extended sentence under s226A or B of the 2003 Act; or (iii) a hospital order with restriction or hybrid order under s37 and 41 or 45A of the Mental Health Act 1983."
- 09/04/18 (4): Panel JR announcement. GT Stewart Solicitors and Advocates, 'GT Stewart file claim for judicial review in the High Court challenging decision of the Law Society' (6/4/18) — This announcement concludes: "The Law Society has not published detailed guidance on what areas are accepted to be mental health law-‘related’. However, in its published ‘expected standards of competence’, applicants are expected to have sufficient knowledge of areas of law, such as mental capacity, community care and human rights, which are relevant to advising and representing clients in proceedings before the First-tier Tribunal. Rebecca maintains that the courses which she undertook came squarely within the competencies required and that the Law Society’s decision to refuse her application for reaccreditation to the Mental Health Accreditation Scheme is unlawful."
- 09/04/18 (3): Law Society panel concerns cont'd. On 6/4/18, (a) the 28/2/18 email from MHLO to the Law Society was published, (b) the Law Society replied stating that "practitioners may submit training in related Mental Capacity topics for up to two hours of the six per year", and (c) MHLO sought a further email responding to each of the four points raised in the original email. If anyone has been adversely affected then please get in touch. See Law Society mental health accreditation scheme - CPD requirements to read the emails.
- 09/04/18 (2): COP costs case. NHS Dorset CCG v LB  EWCOP 7 — "In 2017, the NHS Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group launched what were intended to be four test cases seeking clarification of the law concerning the deprivation of liberty of mentally capacitated adults. For various reasons, however, all of those applications, or in some cases that part of the application relating to the deprivation of liberty issue, were withdrawn, but not before the Official Solicitor had agreed to act for two of the respondents with the benefit of publicly-funded certificates and had incurred some legal costs. Subsequently, the Official Solicitor has applied for all or part of those costs to be paid by the applicant. This judgment sets out my decision on that costs application and the reasons for that decision."
- 09/04/18 (1): Deputyship case. Re AR  EWCOP 8 — "The main reason why this application has been transferred to me is that it raises issues relating to the validity of the orders relied on by Mr Cawthorn to enable him to charge remuneration as a deputy."
- 06/04/18 (1): Law Society panel concerns. Law Society mental health accreditation scheme - CPD requirements.During late 2017 and early 2018 the Law Society has been retrospectively operating an unpublished policy of disallowing certain CPD topics (including mental capacity law) for the mental health accreditation scheme. It is understood that in February 2018 the Law Society adopted or at least discussed a new more flexible policy. On 28/2/18 an email was sent from Mental Health Law Online, setting out the background and stating that the following steps ought to be taken urgently: (1) the previous, normal definition of "mental health law" should be re-adopted; (2) in any event, the current policy should be published on the Law Society's website and circulated by email among all current panel members; (3) if that policy narrowly defines "mental health law" then it should apply only from the date of publication and not retrospectively; (4) the cases of those who have been adversely affected should be revisited. On 6/3/18 the Law Society said it would investigate and respond as soon as possible. On 4/4/18, judicial review proceedings were issued against the Law Society by a former panel member, Rebecca Hill of GT Stewart Solicitors and Advocates, against refusal of reaccreditation. It is now also thought that that the Law Society are retrospectively applying a requirement for and definition of "structured" CPD. The MHLO scheme contains 6 hours of structured, MHA CPD tests per year, but before October 2015 the 12 annual tests were each split between MHA and MCA (see CPD scheme MHA/MCA breakdown for details). If anyone has been adversely affected by either of these issues then please get in touch.