Mental Health Law

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The mission of the Mental Health Law Section is:

  • To review proposed and existing statutes, legislation, rules and court decisions affecting persons with mental illnesses, substance abuse disorders and make recommendations to the Board of Governors concerning these matters.
  • To provide training and education to lawyers concerning the interaction between mental illness and the law and legal practice.
  • To provide information to mental health professionals and the public concerning laws and rules affecting persons with mental illnesses.
  • To collaborate with other professional and advocacy organizations to promote awareness of mental illnesses and mental health and to increase mental health services.

The Section's work covers a wide variety of issues including homelessness, institutional and community services, and the court system - including the criminal justice system.

The Section seeks members whose practices touch mental health law in a variety of ways. Traditionally, our membership has included attorneys that represent persons with mental illness, community providers and hospitals, professional associations, state and local government agencies, and other attorneys whose work involves persons with mental illnesses.