Mental Health Act, 2001

Appeal to Circuit Court.

19.—(1) A patient may appeal to the Circuit Court against a decision of a tribunal to affirm an order made in respect of him or her on the grounds that he or she is not suffering from a mental disorder.

(2) An appeal under this section shall be brought by the patient by notice in writing within 14 days of the receipt by him or her or by his or her legal representative of notice under section 18 of the decision concerned.

(3) The jurisdiction conferred on the Circuit Court by this section may be exercised by the judge of the circuit in which the approved centre concerned is situated or, at the option of the patient, in which the patient is ordinarily resident.

(4) On appeal to it under subsection (1), the Circuit Court shall—

(a) unless it is shown by the patient to the satisfaction of the Court that he or she is not suffering from a mental disorder, by order affirm the order, or

(b) if it is so shown as aforesaid, by order revoke the order.

(5) An order under subsection (4) may contain such consequential or supplementary provisions as the Circuit Court considers appropriate.

(6) Notice of any proceedings under this section shall be served by the person bringing the proceedings on—

(a) the consultant psychiatrist concerned,

(b) the tribunal concerned,

(c) the clinical director of the approved centre concerned, and

(d) any other person specified by the Circuit Court.

(7) Before making an order under this section, the Circuit Court shall have regard to any submission made to it in relation to any matter by or on behalf of a party to the proceedings concerned or any other person on whom notice is served under subsection (6) or any other person having an interest in the proceedings.

(8) The Circuit Court shall exclude from the Court during the hearing of an appeal under this section all persons except officers of the Court, persons directly concerned in the hearing, bona fide representatives of the Press and such other persons (if any) as the Court may in its discretion permit to remain.

(9) No matter likely to lead members of the public to identify a patient who is or has been the subject of proceedings under this section shall be published in a written publication available to the public or be broadcast.

(10) Without prejudice to subsection (8), the Circuit Court may, in any case if satisfied that it is appropriate to do so in the interests of the patient, by order dispense with the prohibitions of that subsection in relation to him or her to such extent as may be specified in the order.

(11) If any matter is published or broadcast in contravention of subsection (8), each of the following persons, namely—

(a) in the case of publication in a newspaper or periodical, any proprietor, any editor and any publisher of the newspaper or periodical,

(b) in the case of any other publication, the person who publishes it, and

(c) in the case of a broadcast, any person who transmits or provides the programme in which the broadcast is made and any person having functions in relation to the programme corresponding to those of an editor of a newspaper,

shall be guilty of an offence.

(12) Nothing in this section shall affect the law as to contempt of court.

(13) In this section—

“broadcast” means the transmission, relaying or distribution by wireless telegraphy of communications, sounds, signs, visual images or signals, intended for direct reception by the general public whether such communications, sounds, signs, visual images or signals are actually received or not;

“written publication” includes a film, a sound track and any other record in permanent form (including a record that is not in a legible form but which is capable of being reproduced in a legible form) but does not include an indictment or other document prepared for use in particular legal proceedings.

(14) In any proceedings under this section a document purporting to be a report prepared pursuant to section 17 concerning a patient shall be evidence of the matters stated in the document without further proof and shall, unless the contrary is proved, be deemed to be such a document.

(15) A notice required by subsection (6) to be served on a person, may be so served—

(a) by delivering it to him or her or to his or her solicitor,

(b) by addressing it to him or her and leaving it at his or her usual or last known residence or place of business or by addressing it to his or her solicitor and leaving it at the solicitor's office,

(c) by sending it by registered post to him or her at his or her usual or last known residence or place of business or to his or her solicitor at the solicitor's office, or

(d) in the case of a body corporate, by delivering it, or sending it by registered post, to the secretary or other officer of the body at its registered or principal office.

(16) No appeal shall lie against an order of the Circuit Court under this section other than an appeal on a point of law to the High Court.