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Mental Health Casework

Law Centre (NI) Mental Health Legal Adviser Louise Arthurs

The Law Centre runs a free specialist legal advice line for mental health patients and their families.

The advice line is staffed by experienced legal advisers. Call 028 9024 4401, 9.30am to 1pm, Monday to Friday.

Our mental health legal adviser Louise Arthurs can give free advice and provide representation in cases involving:

  • guardianship
  • detention
  • compulsory treatment in hospital
  • resettlement
  • access to mental health and learning disability services
  • related issues of benefit entitlement and rights at work

Advisers have extensive experience of representing at Mental Health Review Tribunals and human rights based Judicial Review proceedings.

This leaflet gives more information about the service and the advice line: Law Centre (NI) Mental Health Legal Representation

This booklet gives information about the rights of patients in psychiatric care: Your Legal Rights in Hospital


Our strategic priorities in 2015-16

We will give assistance in cases on the responsibilities of health and social care trusts in relation to treatment and care for people with mental health difficulties.

We will represent clients before the Mental Health Review Tribunal where they wish to challenge guardianship or detention and compulsory treatment in hospital. We will represent clients in strategic cases in the High Court and beyond where appropriate.

In 2015-2016 we will give priority to:

  • representation at Mental Health Review Tribunals;
  • any cases which involve deprivation of liberty;
  • continuing legal work around delay in re-settlement of individuals from long term institutional care;
  • cases concerning automatic referral process under Article 73 of Mental Health Order (1986);
  • cases which relate to lack of services for those with a diagnosed personality disorder;
  • cases which highlight that in Northern Ireland there is no statutory duty to provide aftercare post detention; and
  • cases which raise important human rights issues.

More information on mental health legal issues.

Information on mental health policy issues.




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