Urgent plea for assistance for hearing following Cheshire West

I am posting this message from 39 Essex St barristers, in the hope that somebody reading it may be able to help:

As many of you may know, the President of the Court of Protection is convening a significant hearing next month to consider the court’s approach to authorising deprivations of liberty in light of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Cheshire Westand Surrey cases. Broadly speaking, the court will be considering applications made relation to the following three classes of case:

(1) Those within the scope of Sch A1 to the MCA 2005 (ie in hospitals and registered care homes) in respect of whom the legislative requirements cannot be met due to lack of resources arising from the high number of such persons and the resulting high volume of assessments;

(2) Those outside the scope of Sch A1 (ie not in hospitals or registered care homes) whose deprivation of liberty requires court authorisation;

(3) Those aged 16 and over being cared for in a family home (whether with relatives, foster carers, adult shared lives providers or other arrangements for their care) but with a sufficient degree of State involvement to engage Art 5(1) ECHR, and whose deprivation of liberty therefore requires court authorisation.

Assistance required

For each of the above three classes, in each local authority area, the court requires indicative figures as to:

(1) The estimated current numbers of individuals;

(2) The costs to local authorities and health providers of complying with DOLS or making applications to the court.

It would also greatly assist if the DOLS statistics for March to May 2014 could be provided by each supervisory body, with some indication as to the change of landscape pre- and post- the Supreme Court’s ruling.

Finally, we would welcome any comments or suggestions you may have as to how the Court of Protection might best deal with the sheer volume of applications that is expected.

It is a tall order we know, but your help is required by 4 pm on 28 May 2014. Please can your response be emailed to Neil Allen (neil.allen@39essex.com), who is acting for some of the local authorities.

Disclaimer: this has been prepared by Thirty Nine Essex Street upon the basis of information in the public domain, the hearing before the President on 8 May having been in open court.

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2 thoughts on “Urgent plea for assistance for hearing following Cheshire West

  1. Having had a quick look at out Data base with assessments Pending by the end of June we will have done as many DOLS assessment as we did in the whole of last year. Sheffield City Council supervisory body have been at the higher end in terms number of DOLS assessments in previous years. By the end of June we will have completed 150 for assessments. We are authoristhing at 99% since Cheshire West. So what we have is a “gathering snowball” of reassessments.

    Supported living request are also gathering momentum and I know there are several with our legal team. I wrote to Lucy Bonnerjea I began with a line of the famous poem “I am not waving but drowning” I went on to suggest the urgent authorisation period should be extended to 21 days.
    She told me they were considering the matter. That was in early April.

    it is not just the cost of making applications to the court, The cost also of this massive increase in DOLS assessments is worrying and we can only hope this is recognised with some increase in funding beacuse what we have is no where near enough,.

    Regards Gary Haigh

  2. Hi there anonymous commenter on 29th May. I’m sorry but I can’t publish your comment as it contains text and information from a CoP case and I can’t be sure that there is a court order permitting this to be published. Just as a heads up, it is a contempt of court to communicate information about proceedings in the Court of Protection which are held in private unless you have a specific court order permitting you to do so. Please be aware that unless you have asked the court’s permission to publish information about the case, you are likely to be in contempt of court for posting about it on the internet. Can I suggest that if you want to publish information about it, you ask the judge’s permission? Sorry if that’s frustrating, but I can’t publish it either as I would also be in contempt of court.

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