Deprivation of Liberty Assessments
The phrase Deprivation of Liberty doesn’t always sit comfortably with people, it sounds negative and punitive. It actually comes from the European Convention on Human Rights which is an international treaty to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms of people. Sometimes, it is necessary to deprive a person of their liberty (restrict them from doing exactly what they want) for their own safety and this can include people who live in care homes for who it isn’t safe to go outside without assistance and people who live in their own homes who have more supervision than might be expected for an adult or older teenager.
It is unlawful for a Local Authority to allow a person to be deprived of their liberty without the necessary checks taking place and ensuring that the restrictions that amount to a deprivation of liberty are in the person’s best interests. I can provide two different types of Deprivation of Liberty assessment as outlined below. If you’d like to discuss either of them further or are a Local Authority and would like to instruct me to complete assessments, please contact me.
Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards Assessments
The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards apply specifically to care homes, nursing homes, hospices and hospitals. If an organisation suspects that the restrictions required to keep a person safe amount to a deprivation of liberty, they must apply to the Local Authority to authorise the deprivation of liberty. It is only lawful for organisations to deprive a person of their liberty if it is authorised by the Local Authority or the Court of Protection.
Deprivation of Liberty Assessments for 16-18 Year Olds
The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards only apply to people aged 18 or over and apply to hospitals and registered care homes. In such cases, a deprivation of liberty can be authorised by the Local Authority or the Court of Protection. Anywhere else requires an application to the Court of Protection. This used to include 16-18 year olds who may be living in circumstances that amount to a deprivation of liberty. Until recently, the parents of people under 18 years of age have been able to consent to the care arrangements of their children and this includes care arrangements that amount to a deprivation of liberty. It was then decided by the Courts that children aged 16-18 should be treated as adults rather than children. This meant that parents could no longer consent to care arrangements that amount to a deprivation of liberty and those commissioning the person’s care were required to make an application to the Court of Protection to have the care arrangements authorised. More recently, this decision was successfully appealed and currently parents can consent to such arrangements and they don’t have to be authorised by the Courts … but watch this space!
I have a wealth of experience with deprivation of liberty, mental capacity and working with people under the age of 18 which puts me in a great position to be commissioned to complete your deprivation of liberty assessments. I complete them on approved Court of Protection forms so they’re ready for you to make an application to the Court of Protection.