The courts and mental health

Explains what may happen if you are charged with committing a crime, what happens when you to go court, and how your mental health is taken into account.

Your stories

Who would believe me?

Posted on 07/10/2013

“I didn’t even know what sectioning meant.”

Dan talks about his experience of being sectioned under the Mental Health Act after experiencing psychosis.

Dan Miller
Posted on 04/06/2019

Useful contacts

Mind Legal Line

0300 466 6463 (Monday to Friday, 9.00 am to 6.00 pm)
[email protected]

The Mind Legal Line can provide you with legal information and general advice. The Legal Line can give advice about the Mental Health Act 1983 but not about criminal law.

The Bar Council Direct Access Portal

Provides direct access to barristers without the delay and expense of applying through solicitors. The website has an up-to-date list of direct access barristers who you can contact to get legal advice or help you with your case.

The Law Society

020 7242 1222

The Law Society provides details of solicitors in your area that you can contact for specialist legal advice.

Where can I get support?

Local Mind

Local Minds support over 280,000 people across England and Wales. Their services include supported housing, crisis helplines, drop-in centres, employment and training schemes, counselling and befriending. They may be able to help you find advocacy services in your area.

Find your local Mind here.

Find an advocate

An advocate is a person who can both listen to you and speak for you in times of need. Having an advocate can be helpful in situations where you are finding it difficult to make your views known, or to make people listen to them and take them into account.

For information on advocacy services and groups in your area, you could start by contacting the Mind Legal Line and your local Mind.

Read more about how advocacy might help you.

This information was published in July 2018. We will revise it in 2020.

Mental Health A-Z

Information and advice on a huge range of mental health topics

> Read our A-Z


Helping you to better understand and support people with mental health problems

> Find out more

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