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Statements of Reasons

A party to a proceeding may request a statement of reasons for a determination that the Tribunal has made at the hearing. Parties are the patient, the mental health service and any other person where the Tribunal has made an order joining them as a party to the proceedings.

If you would like a statement of reasons for a hearing in which you were a party, please write to the Tribunal within 20 business days after the hearing date. You can do this via our Contact page.

The Tribunal will prepare a statement of reasons within 20 business days of receiving the request and a copy will be provided to all the parties.

The Tribunal is committed to transparency in its decision making under the Act. In line with this commitment, the Tribunal de-identifies and publishes a large selection of its statements of reasons on AustLII.

The Tribunal published all of its statements of reasons up until mid-Nov 2015 with the exception of those that may have led to the identification of persons involved in the proceeding or where publication was not appropriate in the circumstances.

Since that time, the Tribunal has updated its publishing policy. The Tribunal now publishes statements of reasons that fall within the following categories:

  • statements of reasons highlighting the Tribunal’s interpretation and application of the provisions of the Mental Health Act 2014 governing Treatment Orders, Electroconvulsive Treatment Orders and Tribunal hearings. This category includes any statements of reasons addressing complex or novel legal questions, but also includes statements selected because they provide a particularly informative example of the Tribunal’s decision making;
  • statements of reasons that highlight the application of mental health principles or that cover other themes such as recovery-oriented practice, solution-focused hearings, handling of particular procedural fairness scenarios (for example, the participation of carers and family members, the adequacy of information before the Tribunal); and
  • statements of reasons concerning hearings that involved particularly complex or novel facts or clinical issues.

In order to assist people to navigate statements of reasons on AustLII and to improve the transparency of the Tribunal’s decision-making, the Tribunal will publish from time to time a list categorising the published statements of reasons under these categories.

The categorised list of 2016 decisions is available here.