Quick Guide – s135 or Assessments on Private Premises

  • This quick guide is an attempt to “operationalise” some complex issues but you should refer to your own force policy and your supervisors for specific local requirements.
  • Decide whether the police are going to attend the assessment:
  • There is a legal duty only where the AMHP has a warrant OR where there are predicted RAVE risks
  • Otherwise – it is discretionary.
  • If there are RAVE risks from the patient, ask for a s135(1) warrant to be obtained – document any refusal / inability.
  • Yes, the AMHP absolutely CAN apply for a warrant even if they know they can obtain access.
  • The point of doing so, is the warrant allows the management of risk once inside, by removing for assessment in a place of safety, if need be.
  • If there are RAVE risks from a third party, familiarise yourself with:
  • s115 MHA – AMHPs right of inspection to premises – no power of entry to do so;
  • s129 MHA – criminal offence of obstructing an AMHP in the course of their duty
  • Ensure the quick guide for conveyance is your next read.
  • Whether to apply for a warrant is a decision for the AMHP
  • Whether to ask for a warrant, is the right of the police.
  • Without a warrant under s135(1) of the Mental Health Act, the police have NO powers to use force until: –
  • the AMHP has ‘sectioned’ the patient or unless a criminal offence is attempted or a breach of the peace apprehended.
  • With a warrant under s135(1) , the police can force entry if need be, and remove to a place of safety if thought fit.
  • Whether to remove to a place of safety is a decision for the police.
  • If you do so, follow the same procedure as if for s136 MHA.

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