Behavioral Health Facility, County Kept Parents from Discharging Child; Due Process Claim Proceeds

September 23, 2020 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​In a case in which a behavioral health facility and county officials refused to discharge a transgender teenage patient to his parents for four weeks, the parents' allegations that the hospital defendants acted under color of state law survived a motion to dismiss, the United State Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit has ruled. The court also held that the parents sufficiently alleged that their procedural due process rights were violated but that they did not make a sufficient case that their substantive due process rights were violated to overcome qualified immunity. Thus, the court remanded the case for further proceedings.

When the child started experiencing anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts, he began therapy and medications. After he told his parents about his transgender identity, he emailed the county's Job and Family Services...

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