You are encouraged to have someone help you prepare for the hearing. If you are considering legal advice and representation, go to our Getting Help page.

When you ask for someone to represent you, that someone can be:

  • an advocate from the Mental Health Law Program (MHLP) – this is free service.
  • a private lawyer that you hire to represent you.
  • your friend, family member, near relative.
  • someone you trust.

If you have someone representing you such as a lawyer, advocate, etc., you should meet with that person as soon as you can and ask a lot of questions such as

  • what your rights are.
  • what the hearing is about.
  • what you want to come out of the hearing.
  • whether there are other ways of achieving your goals.
  • whether you should request a second medical opinion.
  • what you want to say at the hearing.
  • what evidence you want to present.
  • how to make a request to the hospital to get your treatment records and other relevant documents.