945.43 Placement of inmate in a mental health treatment facility.—
(1) CRITERIA.—An inmate may be placed in a mental health treatment facility if he or she is mentally ill and is in need of care and treatment, as defined in s. 945.42.
(2) PROCEDURE FOR PLACEMENT IN A MENTAL HEALTH TREATMENT FACILITY.—
(a) An inmate may be placed in a mental health treatment facility after notice and hearing, upon the recommendation of the warden of the facility where the inmate is confined. The recommendation shall be entered on a petition and must be supported by the expert opinion of a psychiatrist and the second opinion of a psychiatrist or psychological professional. The petition shall be filed with the court in the county where the inmate is located.
(b) A copy of the petition shall be served on the inmate, accompanied by a written notice that the inmate may apply immediately to the court to have an attorney appointed if the inmate cannot afford one.
(c) The petition for placement shall be filed in the county in which the inmate is located. The hearing shall be held in the same county, and one of the inmate’s physicians at the facility where the inmate is located shall appear as a witness at the hearing.
(d) An attorney representing the inmate shall have access to the inmate and any records, including medical or mental health records, that are relevant to the representation of the inmate.
(e) If the court finds that the inmate is mentally ill and in need of care and treatment, as defined in s. 945.42, the court shall order that he or she be placed in a mental health treatment facility or, if the inmate is at a mental health treatment facility, that he or she be retained there. The court shall authorize the mental health treatment facility to retain the inmate for up to 6 months. If, at the end of that time, continued placement is necessary, the warden shall apply to the Division of Administrative Hearings in accordance with s. 945.45 for an order authorizing continued placement.
(3) PROCEDURE FOR HEARING ON PLACEMENT OF AN INMATE IN A MENTAL HEALTH TREATMENT FACILITY.—
(a) The court shall serve notice on the warden of the facility where the inmate is confined and the allegedly mentally ill inmate. The notice must specify the date, time, and place of the hearing; the basis for the allegation of mental illness; and the names of the examining experts. The hearing shall be held within 5 days, and the court may appoint a general or special magistrate to preside. The court may waive the presence of the inmate at the hearing if the waiver is consistent with the best interests of the inmate and the inmate’s counsel does not object. The department may transport the inmate to the location of the hearing if the hearing is not conducted at the facility or by electronic means. The hearing may be as informal as is consistent with orderly procedure. One of the experts whose opinion supported the petition for placement shall be present at the hearing for information purposes.
(b) If, at the hearing, the court finds that the inmate is mentally ill and in need of care and treatment, as defined in s. 945.42, the court shall order that he or she be placed in a mental health treatment facility. The court shall provide a copy of its order authorizing placement and all supporting documentation relating to the inmate’s condition to the warden of the treatment facility. If the court finds that the inmate is not mentally ill, it shall dismiss the petition for placement.
(4) REFUSAL OF PLACEMENT.—The warden of an institution in which a mental health treatment facility is located may refuse to place any inmate in that treatment facility who is not accompanied by adequate court orders and documentation, as required in ss. 945.40-945.49.
History.—s. 1, ch. 82-224; s. 29, ch. 84-361; s. 75, ch. 85-62; s. 4, ch. 96-422; s. 1860, ch. 97-102; s. 20, ch. 2000-161; s. 103, ch. 2004-11; s. 12, ch. 2008-250; s. 14, ch. 2010-64.