The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards

Customer update on coronavirus

The Department of Health and Social Care have issued guidance and a form for urgent authorisations during the coronavirus outbreak.

Read the guidance for health and social care staff who are caring for, or treating, a person who lacks the relevant mental capacity.

The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) are an amendment to the Mental Capacity Act 2005. They apply in England and Wales only.

The safeguards provide a legal framework for local authorities, in certain circumstances, to authorise a person to be deprived of their liberty. Where the legal criteria are met, we will work to make sure that the appropriate safeguards are put in place to protect the person’s rights.

Apply for DoLS authorisation

Care homes and hospitals can use the following forms available on GOV.UK to apply for DoLS authorisation:

Please submit completed forms to:

For help in completing these forms, please see the DoLS guidance.

The DoLS team can be contacted by:

Changes to DoLS

In July 2018, the government published a Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill which will see DoLS replaced by the Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS). This passed into law in May 2019.

Under LPS, there will be a streamlined process to authorise deprivations of liberty. The target date for implementation is spring 2022.

More information

The following information provides more detail about the procedures, code of practice and provides a glossary of terms used:

Contact information

Adult Social Care

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