chapter  2
7 Pages

Definitions used in mental health legislation

Arrested or incomplete development of mind The term ‘arrested or incomplete development of mind’ corresponds to the term ‘mental handicap’ used in the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 and covers a number of people with significant learning disabilities. Guidance given on the use of this term in the Code of Practice (Department of Health and Welsh Office 1999, Paragraph 30.5) is as follows:

This implies that the features that determine the learning disability were present at some stage which permanently prevented the usual maturation of intellectual and social development. It excludes persons whose learning disability derives from accident, injury or illness occurring after that point usually accepted as complete development.