2007 ORS 427.290¹
Determination by court of mental retardation
  • discharge
  • conditional release
  • commitment
  • appointment of guardian or conservator

After hearing all of the evidence, and reviewing the findings of the investigation and other examiners, the court shall determine whether the person is mentally retarded and because of mental retardation is either dangerous to self or others or is unable to provide for the personal needs of the person and is not receiving care as is necessary for the health, safety or habilitation of the person. If in the opinion of the court the person is not mentally retarded, the person shall be discharged forthwith. If in the opinion of the court the person is, by clear and convincing evidence, mentally retarded, the court may order as follows:

(1) If the mentally retarded person can give informed consent and is willing and able to participate in treatment and training on a voluntary basis, and the court finds that the person will do so, the court shall order release of the person and dismiss the case.

(2) If a relative, a friend or legal guardian of the mentally retarded person requests that the relative, friend or legal guardian be allowed to care for the mentally retarded person for a period of one year in a place satisfactory to the judge and shows that the relative, friend or legal guardian is able to care for the mentally retarded person and that there are adequate financial resources available for the care of the mentally retarded person, the court may commit the mentally retarded person and order that the mentally retarded person be conditionally released and placed in the care and custody of the relative, friend or legal guardian. The order may be revoked and the mentally retarded person committed to the Department of Human Services for the balance of the year whenever, in the opinion of the court, it is in the best interest of the mentally retarded person.

(3) If in the opinion of the court voluntary treatment and training or conditional release is not in the best interest of the mentally retarded person, the court may order the commitment of the person to the department for care, treatment or training. The commitment shall be for a period not to exceed one year with provisions for continuing commitment pursuant to ORS 427.020 (Review of plan of care for residents).

(4) If in the opinion of the court the mentally retarded person may be incapacitated, the court may appoint a legal guardian or conservator pursuant to ORS chapter 125. The appointment of a guardian or conservator shall be a separate order from the order of commitment. [1979 c.683 §24; 1995 c.664 §97]

Notes of Decisions

Where only evidence of appellant's IQ indicated low estimate between 69 and 83 which placed her level of intellectual func­tioning above "retarded" classifica­tion of American Associa­tion on Mental Deficiency and there was no evidence to indicate she was unable to care for herself because of mental retarda­tion, appellant did not meet re­quired standard for involuntary commit­ment under this sec­tion. State v. Grandy, 50 Or App 239, 623 P2d 666 (1981)

Chapter 427

Notes of Decisions

Former commit­ment pro­vi­sions of this chapter were constitu­tional. State ex rel Vandenberg v. Vandenberg, 48 Or App 609, 617 P2d 675 (1980), Sup Ct review denied

Standard of proof in former version of this chapter was proof "beyond a reasonable doubt." State ex rel Vandenberg v. Vandenberg, 48 Or App 609, 617 P2d 675 (1980), Sup Ct review denied

As commit­ment pro­ceed­ing is not crim­i­nal matter, principle of double jeopardy has no applica­tion. State ex rel Vandenberg v. Vandenberg, 48 Or App 609, 617 P2d 675 (1980), Sup Ct review denied

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Preemp­tion of the Oregon Revised Statutes by the pro­vi­sions of the Interstate Compact, (1973) Vol 36, p 297; civil commit­ment to Mental Health Division of per­son against whom crim­i­nal charges are pending, (1980) Vol 41, p 91

Law Review Cita­tions

16 WLR 439 (1979)


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 427—Persons With Mental Retardation; Persons With Developmental Disabilities, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­427.­html (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2007, Chapter 427, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­427ano.­htm (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.