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BILL AS INTRODUCED 2007-2008

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H.202

Introduced by Representatives Donahue of Northfield, Andrews of Rutland City, Errecart of Shelburne, Fisher of Lincoln, McAllister of Highgate, Milkey of Brattleboro and Pillsbury of Brattleboro

Referred to Committee on

Date:

Subject:  Mental health; admission procedures; preliminary hearing

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to require a preliminary hearing before a district court judge within 72 hours of the filing of an application for emergency examination for mental health treatment.

AN ACT RELATING TO ADMISSION PROCEDURES FOR INVOLUNTARY HOSPITALIZATION FOR MENTAL HEALTH TREATMENT

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  18 V.S.A. § 7510 is amended to read:

§ 7510.  PRELIMINARY HEARING

(a)  Within five days after a person is admitted to a designated hospital for emergency examination 72 hours of an application for emergency examination of a person under section 7504 of this title or an application for a warrant for immediate examination under section 7505 of this title, he may request the district court to shall conduct a preliminary hearing to determine whether there is probable cause to believe that he or she was a person in need of treatment at the time of his admission.

(b)  The court shall conduct the hearing within three working days of the filing of the request.  The court shall cause timely notice of the preliminary hearing to be given to the patient or his the patient’s attorney, the hospital, and the attorney for the applicant.

(c)  The individual has the right to be present and represented by legal counsel at the preliminary hearing.

(d)  If probable cause to believe that the individual was a person in need of treatment at the time of his admission is established at the preliminary hearing, the individual shall be ordered held for further proceedings in accordance with the law.  If probable cause is not established, the individual shall be ordered discharged from the hospital, and the court shall order him the individual returned to the place from which he or she was transported or to his or her home.

(e)  Upon a showing of need, the court may grant a reasonable continuance to either the patient’s attorney or the attorney for the state.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us