S47 without restriction - expiry?


I’ve been referred a client who is on a S47 - their sentence ended a year ago and they did not have a restriction. The hospital are renewing as S47 with a hospital managers meeting.

Is this correct?

I can’t help but feel that once the sentence expires then ordinarily, with a 47/49 it would then before a 37 Notional - is this still the case even without the restriction? I always thought the drop of the 49 caused the notional, and therefore I worry that a straightforward S47 may be something different.

Thanks so much for reading

No reason why a manager’s panel can’t consider an unrestricted s47.

Legally, an unrestricted s47 and a notional s37 are the same thing. A notional s37 is just a shorthand way of referring to an unrestricted s47 that used to be a restricted s47/49.

The one practical difference is that the renewal timetable for an always unrestricted s47 is calculated from the date of the s47 transfer direction itself, whereas for a notional s47 it is calculated from when the s49 restriction was lifted (normally the person’s release date).

If there’s no s49 restriction, the sentence length and release date are actually irrelevant for MHA purposes (because the person could never be transferred back to prison anyway). Which is why MoJ tend not (I believe) to issue many unrestricted s47s.

In fact, from the patient’s point of view, an unrestricted s47 (and therefore also a notional s37) is almost exactly the same as being on an unrestricted s37 (the only difference being they can apply to the Tribunal during the first six months, whereas actual s37 patients can’t).

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PS. Explained more fully, and probably more clearly, by Jonathan elsewhere on MHLO. See



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Yes, it’s correct. When a person is transferred to hospital under an unrestricted s.47, the date of release has no material effect, because the person is already being treated as though detained under section 37 (s.47(3)).

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Thank you both so much!!
I’d asked another experienced solicitor and he said he same as you both but I was still doubting it! I couldn’t find a clear answer in Jones - it made reference to them being the same as a hospital order but I still wasn’t convinced!


Thanks again!