View all text of Subjgrp 161 [§ 14.514 - § 14.518]

§ 14.518 - Litigation involving beneficiaries in custody of Department of Veterans Affairs employees acting in official capacity.

(a) Service of process generally. An employee, at a field facility, served with a writ of habeas corpus involving a beneficiary of the Department of Veterans Affairs in the employee's custody will immediately notify the Regional Counsel of the region in addition to taking such steps as in his or her judgment are necessary for self protection.

(b) Habeas corpus writs. (1) If a Director of a Department of Veterans Affairs hospital concerned advises that, according, to current medical opinion, hospitalization is necessary for the veteran's safety or the safety of others, the Regional Counsel will vigorously oppose the writ at the trial court level. If the writ is granted, no further action will be taken unless so instructed by the General Counsel.

(2) If the medical opinion is that hospitalization is not required for the veteran's safety or the safety of others but continued treatment is clearly indicated in the veteran's interest, the Regional Counsel will assure that the court issuing the writ is so informed and will abide by the court's decision.

(3) If the medical opinion is that there is no danger of self injury to the veteran or others and the need for continued treatment is not clearly demonstrated, the Regional Counsel will advise the Director of the hospital concerned that the veteran should be released and will notify the veteran's attorney of the planned discharge. These cases will be handled informally to the extent practicable.

(4) Involuntary confinement of mentally ill patients in Department of Veterans Affairs installations is predicated upon the law of the State in which the installation is located. In the event the writ is filed in Federal Court, the Regional Counsel will cooperate with the U.S. Attorney to the end that the case is removed to the appropriate State court.

[42 FR 41411, Aug. 17, 1977, as amended at 61 FR 7216, Feb. 27, 1996]