A family member who has a history of mental illness may have wound up being charged for a crime, resulting in their attorney requesting that a competency evaluation is administered. Competency evaluations are used to determine an individual's current mental state, their perception of the supposed crime that occurred, and the various roles of the people who will be in the courtroom during their trial.
A Fair Trial Is Essential
Your first thought upon hearing that your loved one was arrested and charged for a crime may be that they are going to be sentenced for something that they did not do. It can be scary to contemplate a family member spending a long stint in prison and this would be very unfair if the individual was not guilty or was not mentally sane during the time the crime was committed.
If your relative's lawyer has consulted with you and verbalized that a competency evaluation is being sought, the attorney is attempting to protect your family member's rights and verify that your loved one is of sound mind.
A Judge Will Mandate Where The Appointment Will Take Place
State-appointed psychiatrists who are employed at a mental facility typically administer competency evaluations. Before your relative is tested, their lawyer will need to request that a test is granted. After reviewing the information that surrounds your relative's case, a judge will either mandate that a test is administered or will decline to agree to the testing.
If a test is approved, an appointment time and date will be provided and the name of the psychiatrist who will be overseeing the test will be given. Testing can take several hours and your loved one will likely not be allowed to have any other people inside of the testing room, besides the doctor. The doctor will review your relative's past history, any arrests that were made, and any medical or mental problems that could have a bearing on their performance during an upcoming court hearing.
The psychiatrist will prepare a report, which will highlight whether or not they think the patient is mentally capable of understanding the crime that was committed and the sentencing process. If your loved one is deemed incompetent, they may be remanded to a mental facility, where they will receive the medical treatment needed to overcome the issue that they are dealing with. The court will be postponed until their doctor deems them sane enough to stand trial.
For more information, reach out to a company like reliant mental health services.
My name is Shawna Banks and this is a blog that focuses on health issues that affect women. I became interested in women's health when my sister began having medical problems. After her condition worsened, she went to see a doctor. After her diagnosis and successful treatment, I helped her research the different kinds of health conditions that are common in women. By becoming knowledgeable about these types of problems, we can keep ourselves healthier. I hope that when you read this blog, it will help you to identify symptoms that shouldn't be ignored. If necessary, you can schedule an appointment with your physician as soon as possible.