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Deprived of liberty in a care home or hospital

There are laws which protect you from being forced to stay somewhere, or deprived of your liberty.

A deprivation of liberty happens when a person (all the following):

  • is under continuous supervision and control in a care home or hospital
  • is not free to leave
  • lacks capacity to consent

The Mental Capacity Act 2005 includes the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS). These safeguards exist so that people are only restricted an appropriate amount to receive care that is in their best interests.

A large restriction may in itself be a deprivation of liberty. Sometimes many small restrictions added together will amount to a deprivation of liberty. What is important is the amount of control that the care home or hospital has over the person.

What the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards mean

The safeguards ensure that:

  • the arrangements are in the person’s best interest
  • the person has someone to represent them
  • the person has a legal right of appeal over the arrangements
  • the arrangements are reviewed and continue no longer than necessary

Any restrictions should be for a particular care plan. The safeguards outline a process that hospitals or care homes must follow.

We at Walsall Adult Social Care then assess whether this is in the person's best interests.

Mine or someone else's liberty is being deprived

We are responsible for assessing if someone's liberty is being deprived in Walsall. If you believe that this is the case for you or someone else, you should contact us.

Contact us to report the deprivation of someone's liberty, or ask for an assessment.

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