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The Mental Health (Northern Ireland) Order 1986

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Reception of patients into guardianshipN.I.

18.—(1) A patient who has attained the age of 16 years may be received into guardianship, for the period allowed by the following provisions of this Part, in pursuance of an application (in this Order referred to as “a guardianship application”) made in accordance with this Article.

(2) A guardianship application may be made in respect of a patient on the grounds that—

(a)he is suffering from mental illness or severe mental handicap of a nature or degree which warrants his reception into guardianship under this Article; and

(b)it is necessary in the interests of the welfare of the patient that he should be so received.

(3) A guardianship application shall be founded on and accompanied by two medical recommendations and a recommendation by an approved social worker and—

(a)each medical recommendation shall be given in accordance with Article 20 by a medical practitioner and shall include—

(i)a statement that, in his opinion, the ground set out in paragraph (2)(a) applies in relation to the patient; and

(ii)such particulars as may be prescribed of the grounds for that opinion;

(b)the recommendation by the approved social worker shall be in the prescribed form and shall include—

(i)a statement that, in his opinion, the ground set out in paragraph (2)(b) applies in relation to the patient;

(ii)the reasons for that opinion; and

(iii)a statement as to whether he is related to the patient and of any pecuniary interest that he may have in the reception of the patient into guardianship.

(4) A guardianship application shall—

(a)be made in the prescribed form; and

(b)be forwarded to the responsible[F1 authority].

(5) The person named as guardian in a guardianship application may be either the responsible[F1 authority] or, subject to paragraph (6), any other person (including the applicant himself).

(6) A guardianship application in which a person other than the responsible[F1 authority] is named as guardian—

(a)shall be accompanied by a statement in writing by that person that he is willing to act as guardian; and

(b)shall be of no effect unless it is accepted on behalf of that person by the responsible[F1 authority].

(7) A guardianship application and any medical recommendation given for the purposes of such an application may describe the patient as suffering from mental illness or severe mental handicap or in both those ways, but the application shall not be of any effect unless each of the medical recommendations describes the patient as suffering from the same form of mental disorder, whether or not either describes the patient as also suffering from another form.

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