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Victim Support

The Mental Health Act 2016 supports victims of crime when the offender has been assessed as having a mental illness or intellectual disability. These provisions include entitlements for victims to receive specific information about the patient that is relevant to their safety and wellbeing.

The Chief Psychiatrist, Queensland is responsible for providing relevant information to victims.

Support for victims under the Mental Health Act 2016 includes:

Information notices

An Information Notice allows the Chief Psychiatrist to provide specific information about a patient on a forensic order or a treatment support order, to a victim or other person affected by an unlawful act.  The types of information provided under an Information Notice are explained in the FAQs: Victim Information - Information notices.

An application for information should be made to the Chief Psychiatrist via the Queensland Health Victim Support Service on the Application for Information Notice form.

The applicant may wish to nominate a person to receive the information on their behalf by completing the relevant section on the application form. A request for nominee can be made at any time after the Information Notice is made via the Amendment of notice to change applicant’s nominee form.

The Chief Psychiatrist must NOT tell the relevant patient that the Information Notice has been made. However, the applicant may request that the relevant patient is told about the Information Notice by completing the relevant section on the Application for Information Notice form. If a request is made that the patient is to be notified of the Information Notice, the Chief Psychiatrist must first decide whether telling the patient is appropriate.

All information provided to approved applicants under an Information Notice must remain confidential. If information is shared with the public, e.g. published on social media, the Information Notice may be cancelled and a fine may be issued.

The Queensland Health Victim Support Service is available to assist with applications for Information Notices. Call (07) 3858 4411 (free call 1800 208 005) or email victim.support@health.qld.gov.au.

What if the alleged offender has an intellectual disability?

The provisions for Information Notices also apply to people with an intellectual disability being cared for under the Forensic Disability Act 2011. Decisions about release of information to victims in relation to people with intellectual disability residing in the Forensic Disability Service are made by the Director of Forensic Disability, not the Chief Psychiatrist. Once the decision is made, all information under the Information Notice (Forensic Disability Client) is provided via the QHVSS.

An application for information about a forensic disability client should be made to the Director of Forensic Disability on the Application for Information Notice - Forensic Disability Client form.

Further information about making an application for Information Notice in relation to a Forensic Disability Client is available from the QHVSS. Call (07) 3858 4411 (free call 1800 208 005) or email victim.support@health.qld.gov.au.

Related resources

Forms Application for Information Notice
Print (PDF 164 kB)
Online (PDF 1201 kB)
Application for Information Notice – Forensic Disability Client
Print (PDF 27 kB)
Online  (PDF 1201 kB)
Amendment of notice to change applicant’s nominee (Pending)
Frequently Asked QuestionsFAQs: Victim Information - Information notices (PDF, 408kB)
Fact SheetsSupport for victims (PDF, 502kB)
Forensic orders (PDF, 497kB)
Treatment support order (PDF, 420kB)
Persons with an intellectual disability (PDF, 506kB)
Mental Health Act 2016 provisions Chapter 10, Part 6
Information notices
Schedule 1

Classified patient information

The Chief Psychiatrist may disclose particular information to a victim or other person affected by an unlawful act relating to a person admitted to an authorised mental health service from a court or place of custody (classified patient). The types of information provided about classified patients are explained in the FAQs: Victim Information – Classified Patients.

The Queensland Health Victim Support Service is available to assist with Applications for Classified Patient Information. Call 3858 4411 (free call 1800 208 005) or email victim.support@health.qld.gov.au.

Related resources

Forms Application for Classified Patient Information
Print  (PDF 114 kB)
Online (PDF 1201 kB)
Frequently Asked QuestionsFAQs: Victim Information – Classified Patients (PDF, 380kB)
Fact SheetsSupport for victims (PDF, 502kB)
Classified patient provisions (PDF, 505kB)
Mental Health Act 2016 provisions Chapter 17, section 783
Disclosure of particular information relating to classified patient

Appeals against Chief Psychiatrist decisions

An appeal is started by filing a Notice of Appeal with the Mental Health Review Tribunal within 28 days of receiving the written decision from the Chief Psychiatrist. The appeal must be in the approved form and state in full the reasons for which the appeal is made. The appeal may be lodged by mail or emailed to the Tribunal.

Mail: PO Box 15818, City East Brisbane QLD 4002

Email: enquiry@mhrt.qld.gov.au

Website: www.mhrt.qld.gov.au

Phone: (07) 3235 9059 or free call 1800 00 6478 (1800 00 MHRT)

Further information on how to make an appeal is available from the QHVSS, call 3858 4411 (free call 1800 208 005)or email victim.support@health.qld.gov.au.

Related resources

Forms Notice of Appeal – Available from the MHRT Website

Victim impact statements

A victim or close relative of a victim can give information to the Mental Health Court (Court) and the Mental Health Review Tribunal (Tribunal) about the impact of the relevant offence and/or make requests relevant to their own safety and wellbeing, for example, that the patient must not contact them.

The Court must consider the victim impact statement in deciding matters for the patient such as the order to make and the conditions on the order. The Court must then provide a copy of the victim impact statement to the Tribunal.

The Tribunal is required to consider the victim impact statement at each review of the patient’s order. Once the victim impact statement is given to the Tribunal by the court, another victim impact statement is not required, however, a new one may be submitted at any time if the person wishes to do so.

The Queensland Health Victim Support Service is available to assist with making a victim impact statement to the Mental Health Court or Mental Health Review Tribunal. Call 3858 4411 (free call 1800 208 005) or email victim.support@health.qld.gov.au.

Related resources

Fact sheetsSupport for victims (PDF, 502kB)
Mental Health Act 2016 provisions Chapter 5, Part 5, Division 3
Victim impact statements
Chapter 12, Part 3, Section 432(1)(c)
Matters to which Tribunal must have regard
Chapter 16, Part 2, Section 742
Mental Health Review Tribunal – Victim Impact Statement

Queensland Health Victim Support Service

The Queensland Health Victim Support Service (QHVSS) is a free, state-wide service that provides specialised counselling, information and support to victims of crime when the offender has been assessed as having a mental illness or intellectual disability. The QHVSS operates independently of the Chief Psychiatrist’s office. The Chief Psychiatrist sends all information to registered victims via the QHVSS.

Queensland Health Victim Support Service (QHVSS)

Phone:      (07) 3858 4411 or free call 1800 208 005
Email:        Victim.Support@health.qld.gov.au
Website:    www.health.qld.gov.au/qhvss

Last updated: 23 March 2017

Queensland Health Victim Support Service

3858 4411 or 1800 208 005
victim.support@health.qld.gov.au
www.health.qld.gov.au/qhvss

Director of Public Prosecutions Victim Support Service

3222 2492 or 1800 673 428

Mental Health Review Tribunal

3235 9059 or 1800 00 6478
enquiry@mhrt.qld.gov.au
www.mhrt.qld.gov.au