Explains what a community treatment order (CTO) is, how it can affect you, and how you or your family members can change or end it.
This page is about applying to the Mental Health Tribunal to discharge you from a community treatment order (CTO). It covers:
If you want to be discharged from your CTO, you can apply to the Mental Health Tribunal.
The Tribunal will only consider how your mental health is now, and whether you should still be on your CTO or discharged from it. They cannot look at the conditions of your CTO. If you want help through this process, you can get support from an independent mental health advocate (IMHA).
When exactly you can apply will depend on what kind of section you are on:
If you apply to the Tribunal while detained under section 3 and you are then put on a CTO before your hearing, the Tribunal will still go ahead but will still consider whether you meet the criteria for a CTO instead of the section 3. You will not lose any right to apply for a further hearing.
If you apply to the Tribunal while detained under Notional section 37 and you are then put on a CTO before your hearing, the Tribunal will still go ahead. But it will consider whether you meet the criteria for a CTO instead of the Notional section 37. You will not lose any right to apply for a further hearing.
It is your right to have legal aid to pay for a solicitor to help you with your appeal, and during the hearing. Your savings or property will not have to be assessed for you to get this help.
The managers of the hospital responsible for your care must automatically refer you to the Mental Health Tribunal at certain times:
You will still have a Mental Health Tribunal if you have a change in status. For example, if you have been referred to a Mental Health Tribunal because your CTO is revoked and you are then put under another CTO right before the hearing, the hearing will still go ahead.
This is a special court that deals with cases relating to the Mental Health Act 1983. The Tribunal decides whether you can be discharged from your section. It can sometimes make recommendations about matters such as hospital leave, transfer to another hospital, guardianship and community treatment orders (CTOs).
The court is made of a panel, which normally includes:
Where you see a reference to the Mental Health Tribunal in this guide, it means:
In Wales, voluntary patients can also have an IMHA.Visit our full listing of Legal Terms
This information was published in June 2022. We will revise it in 2025.
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