In re T.S.S.

Respondent T.S.S. appealed a Superior Court decision granting the commissioner of the Department of Mental Health's application for a continued order of non-hospitalization (ONH) compelling T.S.S. to continue undergoing mental-health treatment. T.S.S. argued that the superior court erred in interpreting 18 V.S.A. 7101(16) and applying it to the evidence. T.S.S. suffered from paranoid schizophrenia. T.S.S. "has demonstrated a clear pattern that for a short period of time, despite denying that he has a mental illness, he, on orders of non-hospitalization, will take medications and improve significantly. But when he is off the order of non-hospitalization, he quickly goes off medications and deteriorates." Over the fifteen-year history testified to at the hearing, there was no evidence that T.S.S. exhibited assaultive behavior or posed a danger to others. There was evidence, however, that at times T.S.S. posed a danger to himself. In June 2013, the commissioner filed an application for continued treatment. T.S.S. did not contest the application and stipulated to entry of the order. On May 27, 2014, the superior court granted the commissioner's application. T.S.S. appealed. Upon review of the Superior Court's interpretation of 7101(6), the Supreme Court concluded that the superior court applied the wrong legal standard to the evidence, and that the evidence and findings did not support a continued ONH in this case. View "In re T.S.S." on Justia Law