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§40.1-5.3-13  General Rights. –

Published: 2015

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TITLE 40.1

Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals

CHAPTER 40.1-5.3

Incompetency to Stand Trial and Persons Adjudged Not Guilty by Reason of


SECTION 40.1-5.3-13

   § 40.1-5.3-13  General rights. –

(a) Every person committed for care and treatment under the provisions of this

chapter shall retain certain constitutional and civil rights. The exercise of

these rights may be limited only for good cause, and any limitation must be

promptly entered into the person's record. These rights include, but are not

limited, to the following:

   (1) To be visited privately by a personal physician,

attorney, clergyperson, or the mental health advocate, and by other persons at

all reasonable times;

   (2) To be provided with stationery, writing materials, and

postage in reasonable amounts and to have free unrestricted, unopened, and

uncensored use of the mail;

   (3) To wear one's own clothes, keep and use personal

possessions, have access to individual storage space for private use, and

reasonable access to the telephone to make and receive confidential calls;

   (4) To seek independent examinations and opinions from a

psychiatrist or mental health professional of his or her choice;

   (5) To receive and read literature;

   (6) To have access to the mental health advocate upon request;

   (7) Not to participate in experimentation in the absence of

the person's informed, written consent, or if incompetent, upon an order of

substituted judgment;

   (8) To freedom from restraint or seclusion, except during an


   (9) To exercise the rights described in this section without

reprisal, including reprisal in the form of denial of any appropriate and

available treatment or any right or privilege;

   (10) To have an opportunity for exercise at least one hour

each day.

   (b) For the purposes of this section, "emergency" is defined

as an imminent threat of serious bodily harm to the patient or to others. A

request for informed consent includes a reasonable explanation of the procedure

to be followed, the benefits to be expected, the relative advantages of

alternative treatments, the potential discomforts and risks, and the right and

opportunity to revoke the consent.

History of Section.

(P.L. 1987, ch. 281, § 1.)