Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill 2017-2019

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The law on authorising a deprivation of liberty is in the process of being amended.

For more information on what is a deprivation of liberty and current processes, please look at our earlier blog of 24 July 2017:

http://www.emgsolicitors.com/2017/07/24/family-member-deprived-liberty/

The current processes were put together in a piecemeal way to keep up to date with changes in case law. This has resulted in different procedures depending upon where the person is receiving their care and increased pressures on the courts and local authorities. The Law Commission was therefore tasked to look at the problems of the current systems and make recommendations. This Bill comes as a result of their report.

The Bill seeks to introduce a process for all care settings, including care homes, hospital, independent supported living placements and people residing in their own home. The body responsible for authorising a deprivation of liberty will be either: the hospital; CCG; or local authority. Where the person being cared-for does not agree to the proposed arrangements, their case will be reviewed by an Approved Mental Capacity Professional, which is a new role introduced by the Bill. It also introduces a number of other changes which should help appease some of the issues of the present processes.

Until the Bill is approved the current procedures will continue to apply. If you need any advice relating to an existing or proposed deprivation of liberty, please do not hesitate to contact us. We will of course provide further updates as to the progress of this Bill. Please also contact us, if you are an organisation interested in more detailed training on the changes.