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Communtity Law Manual | Mental health | Step 5: Certificate of further assessment

The compulsory assessment process

Step 5: Certificate of further assessment

What happens after the first period of assessment?

Mental Health (Compulsory Assessment and Treatment) Act 1992, s 12

Before the end of the five-day period, the responsible clinician must examine you and provide a certificate of further assessment saying whether or not they believe that you still have a mental disorder and, if they do, whether you need further assessment or treatment.

If the responsible clinician believes that you still have a mental disorder and need further treatment, you will be kept under compulsory assessment for up to another 14 days. This is called the second period of assessment and treatment (see below in this section, “Step 6: The second period of assessment and treatment”).

You will be given a copy of the certificate and a notice explaining this. A copy of the certificate and the notice must also be sent to:

  • the applicant for assessment
  • your principal caregiver (if you have one)
  • your usual GP or nurse
  • your welfare guardian (if you have one)
  • a district inspector
  • an official visitor.

When the district inspector receives a copy of the certificate, they will contact you, find out your wishes and offer you advice about your legal rights as they think necessary. The district inspector will also give you information about your right to have a judge review the decision to keep you under compulsory assessment. If you, the patient (or any of the people who were sent a copy of the certificate) want a review, the district inspector can help with an application (see “Reviews and appeals” in this chapter).

Mental Health (Compulsory Assessment and Treatment) Act 1992, s 70

Note: As the patient, you are entitled to legal advice and can request the assistance of a lawyer if you want advice about your legal rights.

What happens if the certificate of further assessment says that I no longer have a mental disorder?

Mental Health (Compulsory Assessment and Treatment) Act 1992, s 12

If the responsible clinician believes that you no longer have a mental disorder, you must be released from compulsory status. This means you can no longer be made to receive assessment or treatment, and, if you are in a hospital, you are free to leave.

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