Civil Aspects of Forensic Psychiatry
Psychiatry and the law are connected. The law must protect not only the patient but also the society, and this raises the problem of the patient’s individual liberty (autonomy, e.g., concerning consent) versus, among other matters, the compulsory treatment of patients against their wishes (the duty of care of the doctor, e.g., to avoid negligence). The result can be a dilemma between the compulsory care and treatment of mentally ill individuals and such individuals’ rights. In this chapter the interface between forensic psychiatry and civil law is discussed, with particular reference to UK law.