Non-standard DoLS Processes

It has been recognised that some people that live in community settings such as supported living may be deprived of their liberty. At the moment if the person cannot consent to the care and treatment themselves, the DoLS process does not allow local authorities to authorise this on their behalf. So these cases have to be referred to the Court of Protection. The Court of Protection has been specifically set up to deal with certain financial and welfare matters relating to people who lack the capacity to make these decisions for themselves. Where a deprivation of liberty (DoL) may be taking place in the community, the court is able to look at the circumstances and check that the care provided is necessary and proportionate, is the least restrictive, and is in the person’s best interest. The court is also able to settle any disputes or disagreements about how the care is provided. The court can authorise the deprivation for up to 12 months; and when the authorisation period is due to expire, the case needs to be presented to the court again if the deprivation will need to continue. The court authorisation process for DoL in the community applies to people over the age of 16. To prepare a case for the court, in a similar way to the DoLS process, a Doctor needs to be involved to make a statement about the person’s mental health condition. This is often the person’s GP or in some circumstances another doctor/ consultant involved in the person’s care. In addition, a social worker, case manager or care co-ordinator will then provide all of the other information that the court needs to consider the person’s circumstances. This will include the views all of those involved with the person, plus what the person may have thought before they lost capacity to make care and treatment decisions for themselves. Once the judge is satisfied that the care arrangements are necessary and proportionate, the deprivation can be authorised. The judge will not normally make any changes to the care arrangements unless they identify anything that they think could be done better.

Information about internal processes and approach to non-standard deprivations, for use by staff (inside and outside of focus).

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