Psychotherapy Bill [H.L.] - continued        House of Lords
Professional conduct and fitness to practise - continued

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Revocation of interim suspension orders.     25. - (1) On an application made by the psychotherapist concerned, in a case falling within section 24(1)(a), an interim suspension order may be revoked by the Committee which made it on the ground that a change in the circumstances of the case has made the order unnecessary.
 
      (2) Where a psychotherapist has made an application under subsection (1) which has been refused, he may appeal to the court against the refusal.
 
      (3) Where, in relation to an interim suspension order-
 
 
    (a) an appeal has been made under section 24(6) against the making of the order, or
 
    (b) a further application for the order to be revoked has been made after an unsuccessful appeal under this section against the refusal of an earlier application,
  leave of the court shall be required for any appeal under subsection (2) in relation to that order.
 
      (4) Except in a case falling within subsection (5), no application under subsection (1) shall be entertained by the Committee concerned if it is made before the end of the period of six months beginning-
 
 
    (a) with the date on which the order was imposed; or
 
    (b) where an unsuccessful appeal against the order has been made under section 24(6), the date on which the appeal was dismissed.
      (5) Where a previous application has been made under subsection (1) in relation to an interim suspension order, no further such application shall be entertained by the Committee concerned if it is made before the end of the period of six months beginning with the date on which the previous application was finally disposed of.
 
      (6) Any appeal under subsection (2) must be brought before the end of the period of 28 days beginning with the date on which notice of the refusal is sent to the psychotherapist.
 
      (7) On an appeal under subsection (2) the court may terminate the suspension.
 
      (8) On such an appeal the decision of the court shall be final.
 
Investigation of allegations: procedural rules.     26. - (1) The General Council shall make rules as to the procedure to be followed by the Professional Conduct Committee or the Health Committee in considering any allegation under section 22 or 23.
 
      (2) The rules shall, in particular, include provision-
 
 
    (a) empowering each Committee to refer to the other any allegation which it considers would be better dealt with by that other Committee;
 
    (b) requiring the psychotherapist to whom the allegation relates to be given notice of the allegation;
 
    (c) giving the psychotherapist an opportunity to put his case at a hearing if-
 
      (i) before the end of the period of 28 days beginning with the date on which notice of the allegation is sent to him, he asks for a hearing; or
 
      (ii) the Committee considers that a hearing is desirable;
 
    (d) entitling the psychotherapist to be legally represented at any hearings in respect of the allegation;
 
    (e) securing that-
 
      (i) any hearing before the Professional Conduct Committee is held in public unless the Committee decides that it is in the interests of the person making the allegation, or of any person giving evidence or of any patient, to hold the hearing or any part of it in private; and
 
      (ii) any hearing before the Health Committee is held in private unless the Committee considers that it is appropriate to hold the hearing or any part of it in public;
 
    (f) requiring the psychotherapist to be notified by the Committee of its decision, its reasons for reaching that decision and of his right of appeal;
 
    (g) requiring the person by whom the allegation was made to be notified by the Committee of its decision and of its reasons for reaching that decision;
 
    (h) empowering the Committee to require persons to attend and give evidence or to produce documents;
 
    (i) about the admissibility of evidence;
 
    (j) enabling the Committee to administer oaths.
      (3) No person shall be required by any rules made under this section to give any evidence or produce any document or other material at a hearing held by either Committee which he could not be compelled to give or produce in civil proceedings in England and Wales.
 
Legal assessors.     27. - (1) The General Council shall appoint persons to be legal assessors.
 
      (2) They shall have the general function of giving advice to-
 
 
    (a) any person appointed in accordance with rules made under section 20(4),
 
    (b) the Investigating Committee,
 
    (c) the Professional Conduct Committee,
 
    (d) the Health Committee, or
 
    (e) the Registrar,
  on questions of law arising in connection with any matter which he or (as the case may be) the committee is considering.
 
      (3) They shall also have such other functions as may be conferred on them by rules made by the General Council.
 
      (4) To be qualified for appointment as a legal assessor under this section, a person must have a 10 year general qualification (within the meaning of section 71 of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990).
 
      (5) The General Council may pay such fees, allowances and expenses to persons appointed as legal assessors as it may determine.
 
      (6) In the case of a legal assessor who is also a member of the General Council or of any of its committees, any such payment made to him in his capacity as a legal assessor shall be in addition to any to which he is entitled as such a member.
 
Medical assessors.     28. - (1) The General Council may appoint registered medical practitioners to be medical assessors.
 
      (2) They shall have the general function of giving advice to-
 
 
    (a) any person appointed in accordance with rules made under section 20(4),
 
    (b) the Investigating Committee,
 
    (c) the Professional Conduct Committee,
 
    (d) the Health Committee, or
 
    (e) the Registrar,
  on matters within their professional competence arising in connection with any matter which he or (as the case may be) the committee is considering.
 
      (3) They shall also have such other functions as may be conferred on them by rules made by the General Council.
 
      (4) The General Council may pay such fees, allowances and expenses to persons appointed as medical assessors as it may determine.
 
      (5) In the case of a medical assessor who is also a member of the General Council or of any of its committees, any such payment made to him in his capacity as a medical assessor shall be in addition to any to which he is entitled as such a member.
 
 
Appeals
Appeals against decisions of the Registrar.     29. - (1) Where the Registrar-
 
 
    (a) refuses to register an applicant for registration under this Act,
 
    (b) registers such an applicant with provisional or conditional registration,
 
    (c) refuses to renew any registration,
 
    (d) removes the name of a registered psychotherapist from the register on the ground that he has breached one or more of the conditions subject to which his registration had effect (otherwise than under an order of the Professional Conduct Committee), or
 
    (e) refuses to grant an application for the conversion of a conditional, or provisional, registration into full registration,
  the person aggrieved may appeal to the General Council.
 
      (2) Any such appeal shall be subject to such rules as the General Council may make for the purpose of regulating appeals under this section.
 
      (3) An appeal to the General Council must be made before the end of the period of 28 days beginning with the date on which notice of the Registrar's decision is sent to the person concerned.
 
      (4) Any person aggrieved by the decision of the General Council on an appeal under this section may appeal, on a point of law, to the court.
 
      (5) Any right of appeal given by this section shall be in addition to any right which the person concerned may otherwise have to appeal to a county court; but only one such right of appeal may be exercised in relation to the same decision.
 
Appeals against decisions of the Health Committee.     30. - (1) Any person with respect to whom a decision of the Health Committee is made under section 23 may, before the end of the period of 28 days beginning with the date on which notification of the decision is sent to him, appeal against it in accordance with the provisions of this section.
 
      (2) An appeal under subsection (1) shall lie to an appeal tribunal, consisting of a chairman and two other members, established for the purposes of the appeal in accordance with rules made by the General Council for the purposes of this section.
 
      (3) The General Council shall make rules as to the procedure to be followed by an appeal tribunal hearing an appeal under this section.
 
      (4) The rules may, in particular, make similar provision to that made by virtue of section 26(2)(d), (f), (g), (h), (i) or (j).
 
      (5) No decision against which an appeal may be made under this section shall have effect before-
 
 
    (a) the expiry of the period within which such an appeal may be made; or
 
    (b) the appeal is withdrawn or otherwise disposed of.
      (6) The chairman of an appeal tribunal-
 
 
    (a) shall be selected in accordance with rules made by the General Council; and
 
    (b) shall be qualified as mentioned in section 27(4).
      (7) Each of the other two members of an appeal tribunal shall be selected in accordance with rules made by the General Council-
 
 
    (a) one of them being a fully registered psychotherapist, and
 
    (b) the other being a registered medical practitioner.
      (8) The rules may not provide for the selection of any member of an appeal tribunal to be by the General Council.
 
      (9) The chairman of an appeal tribunal shall appoint a person approved by the members of the tribunal to act as clerk of the tribunal.
 
      (10) Subject to any provision made by the rules, an appeal tribunal shall sit in public.
 
      (11) On any appeal under this section-
 
 
    (a) the appeal shall be by way of a rehearing of the case;
 
    (b) the General Council shall be the respondent; and
 
    (c) the tribunal hearing the appeal shall have power to make any decision which the Health Committee had power to make under section 23.
      (12) An appeal tribunal shall have the same powers of interim suspension as the Health Committee has by virtue of section 24(1)(b) and that section shall have effect in relation to suspension orders made by appeal tribunals with the necessary modifications.
 
      (13) No person shall be required by any rules made under this section to give any evidence or produce any document or other material at a hearing held by an appeal tribunal which he could not be compelled to give or produce in civil proceedings in any court in England and Wales.
 
      (14) An appeal tribunal shall have power to award costs.
 
      (15) Any expenses reasonably incurred by a tribunal, including any incurred in connection with the appointment of a clerk, shall be met by the General Council.
 
Appeals against decisions of the Professional Conduct Committee and appeal tribunals.     31. - (1) Any person with respect to whom-
 
 
    (a) a decision of the Professional Conduct Committee is made under section 8 or 22, or
 
    (b) a decision is made by an appeal tribunal hearing an appeal under section 30,
  may, before the end of the period of 28 days beginning with the date on which notification of the decision is sent to him, appeal against it in accordance with the provisions of this section.
 
      (2) No such decision shall have effect-
 
 
    (a) before the expiry of the period within which an appeal against the decision may be made; or
 
    (b) where an appeal against the decision has been duly made, before the appeal is withdrawn or otherwise disposed of.
      (3) An appeal under this section shall lie to Her Majesty in Council.
 
      (4) An appeal under subsection (1)(b) may only be on a point of law.
 
      (5) Any such appeal shall be dealt with in accordance with rules made by Her Majesty by Order in Council for the purposes of this section.
 
      (6) On an appeal under this section, the General Council shall be the respondent.
 
      (7) The Judicial Committee Act 1833 shall apply in relation to the Professional Conduct Committee, the Health Committee and the General Council as it applies in relation to any court from which an appeal lies to Her Majesty in Council.
 
      (8) Without prejudice to the application of that Act, on an appeal under this section to Her Majesty in Council, the Judicial Committee may in their report recommend to Her Majesty in Council-
 
 
    (a) that the appeal be dismissed;
 
    (b) that the appeal be allowed and the decision questioned by the appeal quashed;
 
    (c) that such other decision as the Professional Conduct Committee or (as the case may be) Health Committee could have made be substituted for the decision questioned by the appeal; or
 
    (d) that the case be remitted to the Committee or appeal tribunal concerned to be disposed of in accordance with the directions of the Judicial Committee.
 
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