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ACT SUMMARY 2007-2008


ACT NO. 22


Crimes and criminal procedure; insanity as a defense;

inpatient forensic examinations; sunset

This act repeals two sunsets on the law governing inpatient forensic medical examinations for criminal defendants. Before the underlying law was passed in 2005, court-ordered forensic examinations took place only at the state hospital. Also, judges were required by law to order forensic examinations “in the least restrictive setting.” Under current law, a court may order an inpatient examination for a defendant at either the state hospital or at a designated hospital that meets certain statutory criteria. Additionally, current law requires that a court may not issue an inpatient examination unless a mental health professional first determines the defendant is a person in need of treatment. Additionally, current law authorizes the commissioner to transfer the

defendant to the most “clinically appropriate” designated hospital while a criminal defendant is being held for an inpatient examination. By repealing these sunsets, this act makes permanent the provisions of the current law.

Effective date: July 1, 2007

Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont