2015 ORS 426.335¹
Limitations on liability

The following limitations on liability are applicable to actions and proceedings within this chapter and ORS 430.397 (Voluntary admission of person to treatment facility) to 430.401 (Liability of public officers, providers, treatment facilities and sobering facilities):

(1) The following individuals may not in any way be held criminally or civilly liable for the initiation of commitment procedures under ORS 426.070 (Initiation), provided the individual acts in good faith, on probable cause and without malice:

(a) The community mental health program director or designee of the director.

(b) The two petitioning persons.

(c) The local health officer.

(d) Any magistrate.

(e) Any peace officer or parole and probation officer.

(f) Any licensed independent practitioner attending the person alleged to have a mental illness.

(g) Any licensed independent practitioner associated with the hospital or institution where the person alleged to have a mental illness is a patient.

(2) The community mental health program director or the designee of the director conducting the investigation under ORS 426.070 (Initiation) and 426.074 (Investigation) shall not be held criminally or civilly liable for conducting the investigation, provided the investigator acts in good faith, on probable cause and without malice.

(3) The individual representing the states interest under ORS 426.100 (Advice of court) shall not be held criminally or civilly liable for performing responsibilities under ORS 426.100 (Advice of court) as long as the individual acts in good faith and without malice.

(4) An examiner appointed under ORS 426.110 (Appointment of examiners) may not be held criminally or civilly liable for actions pursuant to ORS 426.120 (Examination report) if the examiner acts in good faith and without malice.

(5) A licensed independent practitioner, hospital or judge may not be held criminally or civilly liable for actions pursuant to ORS 426.228 (Custody), 426.231 (Hold by licensed independent practitioner), 426.232 (Emergency admission), 426.234 (Duties of professionals at facility where person admitted) or 426.235 (Transfer between hospital and nonhospital facilities) if the licensed independent practitioner, hospital or judge acts in good faith, on probable cause and without malice.

(6) A peace officer, individual authorized under ORS 426.233 (Authority of community mental health program director and of other individuals), community mental health director or designee, hospital or other facility, licensed independent practitioner or judge may not in any way be held criminally or civilly liable for actions pursuant to ORS 426.228 (Custody) to 426.235 (Transfer between hospital and nonhospital facilities) if the individual or facility acts in good faith, on probable cause and without malice.

(7) Any legal guardian, relative or friend of a person with mental illness who assumes responsibility for the person under a conditional release under ORS 426.125 (Qualifications and requirements for conditional release) shall not be liable for any damages that result from the misconduct of the person while on conditional release if the legal guardian, relative or friend acts in good faith and without malice.

(8) The individuals designated in this subsection may not be liable for personal injuries or other damages that result from the misconduct of a person with mental illness while the person is on outpatient commitment under ORS 426.127 (Outpatient commitment) if the designated individual acts without willful and wanton neglect of duty. This subsection is applicable to all of the following:

(a) The community mental health program director and the designee of the director for the county in which the committed person resides.

(b) The superintendent or director of any staff of any facility where the person with mental illness receives treatment during the outpatient commitment.

(c) The Director of the Oregon Health Authority.

(d) The licensed independent practitioner and the facility providing care or treatment to a person on outpatient commitment.

(9) For trial visits granted under ORS 426.273 (Trial visits) and 426.275 (Effect of failure to adhere to condition of placement):

(a) The following individuals and entities may not be liable for a persons expenses while on trial visit:

(A) The licensed independent practitioner and the facility providing care or treatment to a person on a trial visit;

(B) The superintendent or director of the facility providing care or treatment to a person on a trial visit;

(C) The Director of the Oregon Health Authority; and

(D) The chief medical officer of the facility.

(b) The individuals designated in this paragraph may not be liable for damages that result from the misconduct of a person with mental illness while on trial visit if the designated individual acts without willful and wanton neglect of duty:

(A) The community mental health program director for the county in which the person resides;

(B) The superintendent, director or chief medical officer of any facility providing care or treatment to a patient on a trial visit;

(C) The licensed independent practitioner responsible for the patients care or treatment during a trial visit;

(D) The Director of the Oregon Health Authority; or

(E) The employees and agents of individuals or facilities under this paragraph. [Formerly 426.280; 2005 c.264 §21; 2009 c.595 §422; 2013 c.360 §57; 2015 c.461 §19; 2015 c.736 §68]

(formerly 426.280)

Notes of Decisions

Immunity from crim­i­nal or civil liability for con­ducting investiga­tion applies to suits by interview subject or by third parties. Deming v. Mt. Hood Community Mental Health Center, 128 Or App 164, 875 P2d 484 (1994), Sup Ct review denied

Immunity from crim­i­nal or civil liability for con­ducting investiga­tion includes immunity both for act of investigating and for consequences of investiga­tion. Deming v. Mt. Hood Community Mental Health Center, 128 Or App 164, 875 P2d 484 (1994), Sup Ct review denied

This sec­tion is ineffective to give private physicians acting in concert with state qualified immunity against claims under 42 U.S.C.A. 1983. Jensen v. Lane County, 222 F3d 570 (9th Cir. 2000)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Right of the Superintendent of the Oregon State Hospital to grant trial visits to patients committed under [former] ORS 161.340, (1972) Vol 36, p 266

Notes of Decisions

The doctor-patient privilege applies under these sec­tions. State v. ONeill, 274 Or 59, 545 P2d 97 (1976)

Prior to commit­ment there must be evidence proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the individual is mentally ill as defined. State v. ONeill, 274 Or 59, 545 P2d 97 (1976)

The Oregon commit­ment statutes are not unconstitu­tional on the grounds of vagueness or as an invasion of privacy as protected by the Ninth and Fourteenth Amend­ments to the United States Constitu­tion. State v. ONeill, 274 Or 59, 545 P2d 97 (1976)

Oregon Constitu­tion did not require jury in mental commit­ment hearings. State v. Mills, 36 Or App 727, 585 P2d 1143 (1978), Sup Ct review denied

Alleged mentally ill per­son does not have right to remain silent in civil commit­ment pro­ceed­ing. State v. Matthews, 46 Or App 757, 613 P2d 88 (1980), Sup Ct review denied

Law Review Cita­tions

9 WLJ 63-85 (1973)

Chapter 426

Notes of Decisions

The entire statutory scheme of involuntary commit­ment provides adequate procedural safeguards which satisfies the require­ments of due process and equal protec­tion. Dietrich v. Brooks, 27 Or App 821, 558 P2d 357 (1976), Sup Ct review denied

Atty. Gen. Opinions

County of residence paying mental commit­ment costs, (1979) Vol 40, p 147; civil commit­ment to Mental Health Division of per­son against whom crim­i­nal charges are pending, (1980) Vol 41, p 91

Law Review Cita­tions

16 WLR 448 (1979)


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 426—Persons With Mental Illness; Dangerous Persons; Commitment; Housing, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors426.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2015, Chapter 426, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano426.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
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.