Accreditation scheme (panel) courses in 2015

We will be running panel courses on 1-2 June (London), 4-5 June (Leeds), 7-8 September (London) and 10-11 September (Leeds). For further details see All scheduled courses.

The Mental Health Lawyers Association is an approved provider of the two-day course which must be attended by prospective members of the Law Society’s accreditation scheme (formerly called the ‘panel’).

Ensure that you book your panel course directly with a provider which is approved by the Law Society. We have been made aware of a non-approved organisation which advertises many panel courses but which, for a large fee, merely books customers onto other providers’ courses. We will not accept such third-party bookings.

New MH practitioners are strongly encouraged also to attend the Foundation course although this is not compulsory) in order to benefit fully from the two-day panel course.

The Legal Aid contract commencing on 1 August 2014 requires that all advocacy at Mental Health Tribunals be carried out by members of the Law Society’s accreditation scheme.

The course

Our presenters include Tribunal judges, Law Society assessors, LAA peer reviewers and costs assessors, and other experienced solicitors with a wealth of practical experience of representing patients at Mental Health Tribunals.

The course is supported by a 300-page coursebook which is updated for each course. The coursebook contains over 200 pages of original content, plus several appendices (including the peer review guidance, the latest Law Society practice note, and recent MHT Practice Directions).

Topics include:

  • The European Convention on Human Rights and mental health law
  • Civil sections and CTOs
  • Criminal detaining sections
  • Special considerations in restricted cases
  • Psychiatric information
  • Consent to treatment provisions
  • Nearest relative
  • Mandatory and discretionary references
  • Ethical and other conduct guidance
  • Interface between Mental Capacity Act 2005 and Mental Health Act 1983
  • Legal Aid
  • The Mental Health Tribunal and its Rules
  • Case preparation
  • Advocacy

The course has been held several times, in various cities, since 2011. Feedback from all of these courses has been excellent.


  • MHLA members: £300
  • Group bookings: £270 (10% discount) for groups of three or more MHLA members
  • Non-members: £390


12 SRA-accredited hours