(1)(a) When a designated mental health professional receives information alleging that a person, as a result of a mental disorder: (i) Presents a likelihood of serious harm; (ii) is gravely disabled; or (iii) is in need of assisted outpatient mental health treatment; the designated mental health professional may, after investigation and evaluation of the specific facts alleged and of the reliability and credibility of any person providing information to initiate detention or involuntary outpatient evaluation, if satisfied that the allegations are true and that the person will not voluntarily seek appropriate treatment, file a petition for initial detention or involuntary outpatient evaluation. If the petition is filed solely on the grounds that the person is in need of assisted outpatient mental health treatment, the petition may only be for an involuntary outpatient evaluation. An involuntary outpatient evaluation may be conducted by any combination of licensed professionals authorized to petition for involuntary commitment under RCW 71.05.230
and must include involvement or consultation with the agency or facility which will provide monitoring or services under the proposed less restrictive alternative treatment order. If the petition is for an involuntary outpatient evaluation and the person is being held in a hospital emergency department, the person may be released once the hospital has satisfied federal and state legal requirements for appropriate screening and stabilization of patients.
(b) Before filing the petition, the designated mental health professional must personally interview the person, unless the person refuses an interview, and determine whether the person will voluntarily receive appropriate evaluation and treatment at an evaluation and treatment facility, crisis stabilization unit, or triage facility.
(2)(a) An order to detain to a designated evaluation and treatment facility for not more than a seventy-two-hour evaluation and treatment period, or an order for an involuntary outpatient evaluation, may be issued by a judge of the superior court upon request of a designated mental health professional, whenever it appears to the satisfaction of a judge of the superior court:
(i) That there is probable cause to support the petition; and
(ii) That the person has refused or failed to accept appropriate evaluation and treatment voluntarily.
(b) The petition for initial detention or involuntary outpatient evaluation, signed under penalty of perjury, or sworn telephonic testimony may be considered by the court in determining whether there are sufficient grounds for issuing the order.
(c) The order shall designate retained counsel or, if counsel is appointed from a list provided by the court, the name, business address, and telephone number of the attorney appointed to represent the person.
(3) The designated mental health professional shall then serve or cause to be served on such person, his or her guardian, and conservator, if any, a copy of the order together with a notice of rights, and a petition for initial detention or involuntary outpatient evaluation. After service on such person the designated mental health professional shall file the return of service in court and provide copies of all papers in the court file to the evaluation and treatment facility and the designated attorney. The designated mental health professional shall notify the court and the prosecuting attorney that a probable cause hearing will be held within seventy-two hours of the date and time of outpatient evaluation or admission to the evaluation and treatment facility. The person shall be permitted to be accompanied by one or more of his or her relatives, friends, an attorney, a personal physician, or other professional or religious advisor to the place of evaluation. An attorney accompanying the person to the place of evaluation shall be permitted to be present during the admission evaluation. Any other individual accompanying the person may be present during the admission evaluation. The facility may exclude the individual if his or her presence would present a safety risk, delay the proceedings, or otherwise interfere with the evaluation.
(4) The designated mental health professional may notify a peace officer to take such person or cause such person to be taken into custody and placed in an evaluation and treatment facility. At the time such person is taken into custody there shall commence to be served on such person, his or her guardian, and conservator, if any, a copy of the original order together with a notice of rights and a petition for initial detention.
Certification of triage facilities—Effective date—2011 c 148:
See notes following RCW 71.05.020
Findings—Purpose—Construction—Severability—2007 c 375:
See notes following RCW 10.31.110
Captions not law—2007 c 375:
See note following RCW 10.77.084
Effective dates—Severability—Intent—1998 c 297:
See notes following RCW 71.05.010