In re James W.

Illinois Supreme Court
Civil Court
Involuntary Commitment
Case Number: 
2014 IL 114483
Decision Date: 
Friday, February 21, 2014
5th Dist.
Randolph Co.
Appellate court reversed; circuit court affirmed.
Judgment continuing patient's involuntary admission to mental health facility is not fatally infirm because of passage of 96 days between patient's demand for jury trial and date when trial commenced. Upon jury trial demand, additional time insures court opportunity to properly address logistical issues. Language of Section 3-800(b) of Mental Code, providing that continuance shall not extend beyond 15 days, is directory, not mandatory. Patient was not prejudiced by scheduling of jury trial, as his mental illness was so severe that he was hospitalized involuntarily for more than six years, and no evidence of changed status, and no prospect of immediate recovery. (THOMAS and KILBRIDE, concurring; THEIS, specially concurring; BURKE, GARMAN, and FREEMAN, concurring in part and dissenting in part.)