2014 01 Mental Health

Saturday 1 February 2014

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R (on the application of L) v West London Mental Health NHS Trust & (1) Partnerships in Care (2) Secretary of State for Health [2014] EWCA Civ 47 (Moses LJ, Patten LJ, Beatson LJ): On allowing the appeal the Court held that the procedural steps set out in R. (on the application of L) v West London Mental Health NHS Trust [2012] EWHC 3200 (Admin) and stated to be required in the interests of procedural fairness wherever the managers of a medium security hospital were contemplating referring a detainee to high security conditions were set aside because they impermissibly converted what was an essentially clinical judgment into a judicial exercise. The court gave guidance as to the correct approach to the decision-making process. Whether transfer was necessary was largely a clinical decision, with an added "rationing" aspect because of the scarcity of high security places in hospitals. There was a need for circumspection as to what procedure was required. (click here for judgment)

R (on the application of Das) v Secretary of State for the Home Department & (1) MIND & (2) Medical Justice (Interveners) [2014] EWCA Civ 45 (Moses LJ, Beatson LJ, Underhill LJ): In allowing the appeal the Court held that the question whether a person had a "serious mental illness" was a fact-sensitive question for the purposes of a Home Office policy that stated those suffering from a serious mental illness which could not be satisfactorily managed within detention were suitable for immigration detention in only very exceptional circumstances. The policy did not require the mental illness to be such that the person needed in-patient medical attention or sectioning under the Mental Health Act 1983. The matter was remitted to the Administrative Court. (click here for judgment).

The Appellant was represent by Stephanie Harrison QCand Michelle Brewerof Garden Court Chambers

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