no need to leave your home to receive legal consultations and services - Call or click to learn more about phone and videoconferencing with our attorneys

Admission of a Disabled Adult to a Mental Health Facility By a Guardian in Illinois

Article written by Illinois & Iowa Attorney Kevin O'Flaherty
Updated on
October 28, 2019

In this article we explain admission of a disabled adult to a mental health facility by a guardian in Illinois. We answer the questions, “what is a court-appointed guardian for someone with disabilities?”, “does a guardian have the authority to admit a ward to a mental health facility?”, “how can a disabled adult be involuntarily admitted to a mental health facility by a guardian?”, and “what is considered a mental health facility in this case?”

For more on guardianship generally, check out our article: Illinois Guardianship Explained.

What is a court-appointed guardian for someone with disabilities?

When an adult is no longer able to make safe, reasonable decisions, an Illinois court can appoint an individual, relative or non-relative, to serve as a legal guardian. This legal relationship removes some or all legal decision-making rights of the person with disabilities, deeming him or her legally unable to provide for his or her own physical, emotional, medical and residential needs. An incapacitated adult who has a legal guardian is oftentimes referred to as a “ward.”

A court-appointed guardian is someone who has been granted authority by a court to care for and take responsibility for making decisions for a person who is unable to care of himself or herself. A court will appoint a guardian after the potential guardian has established that he or she will act in the best interest of the ward.

Does a guardian have the authority to admit a ward to a mental health facility?

While a guardian can make many medical decisions for a ward, Illinois law does not give guardians the authority to force a ward to be admitted to a mental health facility against his or her wishes. A guardian can only admit a ward to a mental health facility if the ward requests or voluntarily accepts it and if the ward has the capacity to consent. A mental health facility director or designee determines the ward’s capacity to consent, which means that the ward is able to understand the situation.

If a disabled adult is admitted to a mental health facility based on consent, he or she can request discharge at any time in writing.  At this point the facility either must discharge the ward or start court proceedings to commit them.

How can a disabled adult be involuntarily admitted to a mental health facility by a guardian?

If an adult with a disability objects to being admitted to a mental health facility, his or her legal guardian can petition for involuntary admission under the Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code.

After the guardian files the petition, a hearing will be scheduled to determine whether admission into the mental health facility is in the best interest of the disabled adult.  If the judge determines that admission is in the disabled adult’s best interests, he or she will issue an order that the guardian can use to admit the disabled adult to the mental health facility against the disabled adult’s wishes.

What is the definition of a mental health facility?

Illinois law defines a mental health facility as any private or state-run licensed hospital, institution or facility, including clinics and health centers, that provide treatment for mental illnesses. While a guardian can place a mentally ill ward in a nursing home without the ward’s consent, the guardian cannot place a nonconsenting ward in a nursing home’s behavioral unit. This is because the court determined that the behavioral unit of a nursing home is considered a mental health facility.

Additional Financial Considerations
from Financial Experts

From Financial Experts

For many years, financial institutions have been creating a disservice to clients and the industry as a whole for years.
View More Professional Considerations

Presented By O'Flaherty Law

What is a court-appointed guardian for someone with disabilities?

Need Legal Help? 

Schedule a

What to Expect From a Consultation

The purpose of a free consultation is to determine whether our firm is a good fit for your legal needs. Although we often discuss expected results and costs, our attorneys do not give legal advice unless and until you choose to retain us. Although most consultations are complimentary, some may carry a charge depending on the type of matter and meeting location.

Leave a Comment With Your Questions

Read more about

Guardianship Law

We offer free, paid & Online CONSULTATION in:

Guardianship Law

Schedule a consultation with our Illinois & Iowa Attorneys

We offer free, paid & online consultation in nearly every area of law throughout Illinois and Iowa. We have a range of options to assist you with your legal needs.

What happens at a legal consultation?
Meet with an attorney for a free consultation to discuss what type of matter you need to discuss with an attorney.
Over the Phone Legal Consultations
Similar to In-person consultations, you discuss your legal needs with our attorneys to discuss your matter.
An online consultation is like an in-person and an over the phone online Consultation. You meet face to face with our attorneys through our online portal.
Paid Legal Consultations
While a free consultation allows us to discuss what we can do in general terms for your legal matter, a paid consultation allows us to answer direct questions.

More Illinois Adult Guardianship Law Episodes

contact us

Monday to Friday
9am - 5pm

Contact Us
Disclaimer: Our articles and comment responses do not constitute legal advice and are not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

Please contact us to schedule a free consultation for legal advice specific to your situation.

Here are some articles that may interest you
Schedule a

Contact us for a Free Consultation

Schedule a free consultation

O'Flaherty Law is happy to meet with you by phone or at our office locations in:

Who We Are
We are your community law firm. Our Illinois & Iowa Attorneys are committed to providing exceptional client service in a cost-effective manner in the areas of Family Law, Probate, Estate Planning, Civil Litigation, Guardianship, Criminal Defense, Corporate & Contract Law, Bankruptcy and Real Estate.

Some of Our Accomplishments

Best Child Support Lawyers in Chicago
DuPage County Probate Attorney
Kevin P. O'Flaherty
Rated by Super Lawyers

loading ...
Naperville attorney
DuPage County Probate Attorney

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required