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S.B. 135

This document includes Senate 3rd Reading Floor Amendments incorporated into the bill on Fri, Feb 8, 2013 at 11:39 AM by lpoole. -->             


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Senate 2nd Reading Amendments 2-8-2013 lp/rf
1
    
INVOLUNTARY COMMITMENT AMENDMENTS

             2     
2013 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: Todd Weiler

             5     
House Sponsor: V. Lowry Snow

             6     

             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill modifies Title 62A, Chapter 15, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Act, by
             10      amending procedures for involuntary commitment.
             11      Highlighted Provisions:
             12          This bill:
             13          .    requires an applicant for an involuntary commitment order to consult with the
             14      appropriate local mental health authority before the court may issue a judicial order S. if the local
             14a      mental health authority appears at the commitment hearing .S ;
             15          .    states that notice of involuntary commitment proceedings shall be sent to the local
             16      mental health authority or its designee; and
             17          .    makes technical changes.
             18      Money Appropriated in this Bill:
             19          None
             20      Other Special Clauses:
             21          None
             22      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             23      AMENDS:
             24          62A-15-631, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2012, Chapter 248
             25     

             26      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             27          Section 1. Section 62A-15-631 is amended to read:



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Senate 2nd Reading Amendments 2-8-2013 lp/rf
             28
          62A-15-631. Involuntary commitment under court order -- Examination --
             29      Hearing -- Power of court -- Findings required -- Costs.
             30          (1) Proceedings for involuntary commitment of an individual who is 18 years of age or
             31      older may be commenced by filing a written application with the district court of the county in
             32      which the proposed patient resides or is found, by a responsible person who has reason to know
             33      of the condition or circumstances of the proposed patient which lead to the belief that the
             34      individual has a mental illness and should be involuntarily committed. That application shall
             35      be accompanied by:
             36          (a) a certificate of a licensed physician or a designated examiner stating that within a
             37      seven-day period immediately preceding the certification the physician or designated examiner
             38      has examined the individual, and that the physician or designated examiner is of the opinion
             39      that the individual is mentally ill and should be involuntarily committed; or
             40          (b) a written statement by the applicant that:
             41          (i) the individual has been requested to, but has refused to, submit to an examination of
             42      mental condition by a licensed physician or designated examiner;
             43          (ii) is sworn to under oath; and
             44          (iii) states the facts upon which the application is based.
             45          (2) S. (a) [ Before ] Subject to Subsection (2)(b), before .S issuing a judicial order, the
             45a      court [may] S. [ shall ] may .S require the applicant to consult
             46      with the appropriate local mental health authority, [or] and may direct a mental health
             47      professional from that local mental health authority to interview the applicant and the proposed
             48      patient to determine the existing facts and report them to the court.
             48a           S. (b) The consultation described in Subsection (2)(a):
             48b          (i) may take place at or before the hearing; and
             48c          (ii) is required if the local mental health authority appears at the hearing. .S
             49          (3) If the court finds from the application, from any other statements under oath, or
             50      from any reports from a mental health professional that there is a reasonable basis to believe
             51      that the proposed patient has a mental illness [which] that poses a substantial danger, as
             52      defined in Section 62A-15-602 , to self or others requiring involuntary commitment pending
             53      examination and hearing; or, if the proposed patient has refused to submit to an interview with
             54      a mental health professional as directed by the court or to go to a treatment facility voluntarily,
             55      the court may issue an order, directed to a mental health officer or peace officer, to
             56      immediately place the proposed patient in the custody of a local mental health authority or in a
             57      temporary emergency facility as provided in Section 62A-15-634 to be detained for the purpose
             58      of examination. Within 24 hours of the issuance of the order for examination, a local mental



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             59
     health authority or its designee shall report to the court, orally or in writing, whether the patient
             60      is, in the opinion of the examiners, mentally ill, whether the patient has agreed to become a
             61      voluntary patient under Section 62A-15-625 , and whether treatment programs are available and
             62      acceptable without court proceedings. Based on that information, the court may, without
             63      taking any further action, terminate the proceedings and dismiss the application. In any event,
             64      if the examiner reports orally, the examiner shall immediately send the report in writing to the
             65      clerk of the court.
             66          (4) Notice of commencement of proceedings for involuntary commitment, setting forth
             67      the allegations of the application and any reported facts, together with a copy of any official
             68      order of detention, shall be provided by the court to a proposed patient before, or upon,
             69      placement in the custody of a local mental health authority or, with respect to any individual
             70      presently in the custody of a local mental health authority whose status is being changed from
             71      voluntary to involuntary, upon the filing of an application for that purpose with the court. A
             72      copy of that order of detention shall be maintained at the place of detention.
             73          (5) Notice of commencement of those proceedings shall be provided by the court as
             74      soon as practicable to the applicant, any legal guardian, any immediate adult family members,
             75      legal counsel for the parties involved, the local mental health authority or its designee, and any
             76      other persons whom the proposed patient or the court shall designate. That notice shall advise
             77      those persons that a hearing may be held within the time provided by law. If the patient has
             78      refused to permit release of information necessary for provisions of notice under this
             79      subsection, the extent of notice shall be determined by the court.
             80          (6) Proceedings for commitment of an individual under the age of 18 years to the
             81      division may be commenced by filing a written application with the juvenile court in
             82      accordance with the provisions of Part 7, Commitment of Persons Under Age 18 to Division of
             83      Substance Abuse and Mental Health.
             84          (7) The district court may, in its discretion, transfer the case to any other district court
             85      within this state, provided that the transfer will not be adverse to the interest of the proposed
             86      patient.
             87          (8) (a) Within 24 hours, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, of the
             88      issuance of a judicial order, or after commitment of a proposed patient to a local mental health
             89      authority under court order for detention or examination, the court shall appoint two designated



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             90
     examiners to examine the proposed patient. If requested by the proposed patient's counsel, the
             91      court shall appoint, as one of the examiners, a reasonably available qualified person designated
             92      by counsel. The examinations, to be conducted separately, shall be held at the home of the
             93      proposed patient, a hospital or other medical facility, or at any other suitable place that is not
             94      likely to have a harmful effect on the patient's health.
             95          (b) The examiner shall inform the patient if not represented by an attorney that, if
             96      desired, the patient does not have to say anything, the nature and reasons for the examination,
             97      that it was ordered by the court, that any information volunteered could form part of the basis
             98      for [his or her] the patient's involuntary commitment, and that findings resulting from the
             99      examination will be made available to the court.
             100          (c) A time shall be set for a hearing to be held within 10 calendar days of the
             101      appointment of the designated examiners, unless those examiners or a local mental health
             102      authority or its designee informs the court prior to that hearing date that the patient is not
             103      mentally ill, that the patient has agreed to become a voluntary patient under Section
             104      62A-15-625 , or that treatment programs are available and acceptable without court
             105      proceedings, in which event the court may, without taking any further action, terminate the
             106      proceedings and dismiss the application.
             107          (9) (a) Before the hearing, an opportunity to be represented by counsel shall be
             108      afforded to every proposed patient, and if neither the patient nor others provide counsel, the
             109      court shall appoint counsel and allow counsel sufficient time to consult with the patient before
             110      the hearing. In the case of an indigent patient, the payment of reasonable attorney fees for
             111      counsel, as determined by the court, shall be made by the county in which the patient resides or
             112      was found.
             113          (b) The proposed patient, the applicant, and all other persons to whom notice is
             114      required to be given shall be afforded an opportunity to appear at the hearing, to testify, and to
             115      present and cross-examine witnesses. The court may, in its discretion, receive the testimony of
             116      any other person. The court may allow a waiver of the patient's right to appear only for good
             117      cause shown, and that cause shall be made a matter of court record.
             118          (c) The court is authorized to exclude all persons not necessary for the conduct of the
             119      proceedings and may, upon motion of counsel, require the testimony of each examiner to be
             120      given out of the presence of any other examiners.



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             121
         (d) The hearing shall be conducted in as informal a manner as may be consistent with
             122      orderly procedure, and in a physical setting that is not likely to have a harmful effect on the
             123      mental health of the proposed patient.
             124          (e) The court shall consider all relevant historical and material information [which] that
             125      is offered, subject to the rules of evidence, including reliable hearsay under Rule 1102, Utah
             126      Rules of Evidence.
             127          (f) (i) A local mental health authority or its designee, or the physician in charge of the
             128      patient's care shall, at the time of the hearing, provide the court with the following information:
             129          (A) the detention order;
             130          (B) admission notes;
             131          (C) the diagnosis;
             132          (D) any doctors' orders;
             133          (E) progress notes;
             134          (F) nursing notes; and
             135          (G) medication records pertaining to the current commitment.
             136          (ii) That information shall also be supplied to the patient's counsel at the time of the
             137      hearing, and at any time prior to the hearing upon request.
             138          (10) The court shall order commitment of an individual who is 18 years of age or older
             139      to a local mental health authority if, upon completion of the hearing and consideration of the
             140      information presented in accordance with Subsection (9)(e), the court finds by clear and
             141      convincing evidence that:
             142          (a) the proposed patient has a mental illness;
             143          (b) because of the proposed patient's mental illness the proposed patient poses a
             144      substantial danger, as defined in Section 62A-15-602 , to self or others, which may include the
             145      inability to provide the basic necessities of life such as food, clothing, and shelter, if allowed to
             146      remain at liberty;
             147          (c) the patient lacks the ability to engage in a rational decision-making process
             148      regarding the acceptance of mental treatment as demonstrated by evidence of inability to weigh
             149      the possible risks of accepting or rejecting treatment;
             150          (d) there is no appropriate less-restrictive alternative to a court order of commitment;
             151      and



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             152
         (e) the local mental health authority can provide the individual with treatment that is
             153      adequate and appropriate to the individual's conditions and needs. In the absence of the
             154      required findings of the court after the hearing, the court shall forthwith dismiss the
             155      proceedings.
             156          (11) (a) The order of commitment shall designate the period for which the individual
             157      shall be treated. When the individual is not under an order of commitment at the time of the
             158      hearing, that period may not exceed six months without benefit of a review hearing. Upon
             159      such a review hearing, to be commenced prior to the expiration of the previous order, an order
             160      for commitment may be for an indeterminate period, if the court finds by clear and convincing
             161      evidence that the required conditions in Subsection (10) will last for an indeterminate period.
             162          (b) The court shall maintain a current list of all patients under its order of commitment.
             163      That list shall be reviewed to determine those patients who have been under an order of
             164      commitment for the designated period. At least two weeks prior to the expiration of the
             165      designated period of any order of commitment still in effect, the court that entered the original
             166      order shall inform the appropriate local mental health authority or its designee. The local
             167      mental health authority or its designee shall immediately reexamine the reasons upon which the
             168      order of commitment was based. If the local mental health authority or its designee determines
             169      that the conditions justifying that commitment no longer exist, it shall discharge the patient
             170      from involuntary commitment and immediately report that to the court. Otherwise, the court
             171      shall immediately appoint two designated examiners and proceed under Subsections (8)
             172      through (10).
             173          (c) The local mental health authority or its designee responsible for the care of a patient
             174      under an order of commitment for an indeterminate period, shall at six-month intervals
             175      reexamine the reasons upon which the order of indeterminate commitment was based. If the
             176      local mental health authority or its designee determines that the conditions justifying that
             177      commitment no longer exist, that local mental health authority or its designee shall discharge
             178      the patient from its custody and immediately report the discharge to the court. If the local
             179      mental health authority or its designee determines that the conditions justifying that
             180      commitment continue to exist, the local mental health authority or its designee shall send a
             181      written report of those findings to the court. The patient and [his] the patient's counsel of
             182      record shall be notified in writing that the involuntary commitment will be continued, the



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             183
     reasons for that decision, and that the patient has the right to a review hearing by making a
             184      request to the court. Upon receiving the request, the court shall immediately appoint two
             185      designated examiners and proceed under Subsections (8) through (10).
             186          (12) In the event that the designated examiners are unable, because a proposed patient
             187      refuses to submit to an examination, to complete that examination on the first attempt, the
             188      court shall fix a reasonable compensation to be paid to those designated examiners for their
             189      services.
             190          (13) Any person committed as a result of an original hearing or a person's legally
             191      designated representative who is aggrieved by the findings, conclusions, and order of the court
             192      entered in the original hearing has the right to a new hearing upon a petition filed with the court
             193      within 30 days of the entry of the court order. The petition must allege error or mistake in the
             194      findings, in which case the court shall appoint three impartial designated examiners previously
             195      unrelated to the case to conduct an additional examination of the patient. The new hearing
             196      shall, in all other respects, be conducted in the manner otherwise permitted.
             197          (14) Costs of all proceedings under this section shall be paid by the county in which the
             198      proposed patient resides or is found.





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