Friday, June 22, 2012
I went in today on what was supposed to be a day off in order to have a hearing for client who wanted out of the hospital. It was a tough fight. Prehearing motions, objections, chastisements from the judge. I went after the psychiatrist pretty hard on cross. He admitted he hadn't examined her for two weeks and that he didn't know if she was presently suicidal. I put my client on the stand and she did fairly well. Admitted to a drug problem. Admitted mental illness (PTSD, not the way off base diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder given by the psychiatrist). Judge reserved decision. I told my client to hold on, that I didn't know how long a decision would take, that the long-term goal was keeping her out of the state hospital. I came home and, around 4PM, got a call from work. We won. The judge ruled that the hospital did not prove that she presented a threat of serious harm to herself or others as a result of a mental illness. Huzzah? I hope she doesn't OD.