Community setting

For people in supported living, at home or somewhere other than care homes or hospitals a deprivation of liberty will need to be authorised by the Court of Protection rather than by a Local Authority.

 The following requirements still need to be met:

  • has the person got capacity to consent to remain there?
  • is the person under continuous supervision and control?
  • is the person not free to leave?

This process can be very lengthy with some authorisations severely delayed.

If the case is contentious

If a case is contentious it will go to Court. This could be because the person may not agree with decisions about their care. If they lack capacity to instruct a solicitor, the court will appoint a Litigation Friend.

A Litigation Friend can be a family member or friend however if nobody is willing, available or appropriate, an independent person such as advocate can be appointed. If there is a family dispute it is unlikely that a family member would be appointed.

If a case is not contentious

If a case is not contentious and all those involved agree that a deprivation of liberty is appropriate a Rule 3A Representative can be appointed by order of the Court.

A Rule 3A Representative is the name given by the court to a person who is willing and able to oversee a persons care and support needs and tell the court of any changes to their needs or health.

This role can be taken by family or friends, or if nobody is available or appropriate, by an independent person such as an advocate.

In non-contentious cases the deprivation of liberty can be authorised by a Judge ‘on the papers’ without a Court Hearing. This avoids the use of Solicitors and Barristers and takes less time and is less expensive.

The Rule 3A Representative role is similar to that of the representative.

If a provider or family members identify any who meets the DoLS requirements and are not in a care home or hospital, they should contact their social worker or contact the DoLS Team on 01708 433550.

Usually the Local Authority will allocate a worker to complete relevant paperwork for the application to Court to be made.

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