Domestic (by country)

1. Mainland China

In China, the recognition of legal capacity is equated with mental capacity assessment, thus allowing disability to be a basis to deprive or deny a person’s legal capacity. The relevant laws clearly differentiate people based on their mental state and are discriminatory by assuming persons with mental disabilities do not have the ability to exercise their legal capacity. Similarly, in practice, whether a person with mental disability can recognize his or her own behavior is frequently assessed medically, which is based on mental capacity assessment.

The guardianship system places persons with disabilities under the substituted decision-making regime; as a result, persons with disabilities are unable to make decisions concerning themselves based on their own will and preference.

The Mental Health Law that came into force in 2013 has been perceived as an attempt to prevent involuntary treatment and increase the involvement of persons with mental disabilities. This piece of legislation, to a certain extent, restricts the authority of a guardian; for example, a guardian has no authority to restrict the personal liberty of a person with mental disability. In other words, a guardian has no authority to detain a person under guardianship in a mental health facility or force such person to undergo mental health treatment. However, many of the provisions in the Mental Health Law still emphasize the authorities of a guardian. While the Mental Health Law allows a person with mental disability to bring a legal action, due to the requirements under the civil procedure law, the ability to bring a legal action is not recognized in practice.

Certain quasi-administrative procedures further aggravated the negative impact of the guardianship system. The Disabled Card (regardless of the type of disability) issued by the China Disabled Persons’ Federation has a column to identify the guardian of the person with disability. However, there is no law that requires, for example, persons with physical disabilities to have a guardian. In practice, persons with cognitive or intellectual disabilities must identify their guardians under that column; for persons with visual impairment or similar disabilities, the relevant department will strongly recommend (though this is not compulsory) such person to identify a guardian. Moreover, it must be noted that under most circumstances, the family of a person with disability can apply for a Disabled Card without the presence or knowledge of such person. The requirement of identifying a guardian is, in practice, a deprivation of legal capacity.

Once their legal capacity has been deprived, the daily lives of persons with disabilities will be limited in many aspects, such as the ability to conclude contracts or conduct other social transactions. Depriving the legal capacity of persons with disabilities will limit their other fundamental rights, including the right to vote, the right to marry and found a family, reproductive rights, the right to establish and terminate intimate relationships, and the right to give consent to medical treatment etc.. In reality, as persons with disabilities are unable to exercise their legal capacity, their rights can be easily infringed; for example, very often persons with disabilities are being involuntarily detained in a mental health facility or forced to undergo mental health treatment, and there are also frequent cases of persons with disabilities being deprived of their property. Moreover, despite their rights being infringed, persons with disabilities are unable to seek compensation or redress due to the restrictions placed on their exercise of legal capacity.

The following are relevant legislation and policies in Mainland China in relation to the legal capacity of persons with disabilities.

(Adopted at the 17th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Seventh National People’s Congress on December 28th, 1990, and revised at the 2nd Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Eleventh National People’s Congress on April 24th, 2008)

Chapter 1 General Provisions

Chapter 2 Rehabilitation

Chapter 3 Education

Chapter 4 Employment

Chapter 5 Cultural Life

Chapter 6 Social Security

Chapter 7 Accessible Environment

Chapter 8 Legal Liabilities

Chapter 9 Supplementary Provision

Chapter 1 General Provisions

Article 1 This Law is formulated in accordance with the Constitution for the purposes of safeguarding the lawful rights and interests of persons with disabilities, promoting the work on disability, ensuring the equal and full participation of persons with disabilities in social life and their share of the material and cultural wealth of society.

Article 2 A person with disabilities refers to one who has abnormalities of loss of a certain organ or function, psychologically or physiologically, or in anatomical structure and has lost wholly or in part the ability to perform an activity in the way considered normal.

The term “a person with disabilities” refers to one with visual, or hearing, or speech, or physical, or intellectual, or psychiatric disability, multiple disabilities and/or other disabilities.

The criteria for classification of disabilities shall be established by the State Council.

Article 3 Persons with disabilities shall enjoy equal rights with other citizens in political, economic, cultural and social respects and in family life as well.

The rights and dignity of persons with disabilities as citizens shall be protected by law.

Discrimination on the basis of disability shall be prohibited. Insult of and disservice to persons with disabilities shall be prohibited. Disparagement of and infringement upon the dignity of persons with disabilities by means of mass media or any other means shall be prohibited.

Article 4 The State shall provide persons with disabilities with special assistance by adopting supplementary methods and supportive measures with a view to alleviating or eliminating the impact of their disabilities and external barriers and ensuring the realization of their rights.

Article 5 People’s governments at and above the county level shall incorporate the work on disability into their economic and social development programs under strengthened leadership and with overall coordination, and shall include expenditure on disability programs in budget arrangements with a view to establishing mechanisms of guaranteed resources.

The State Council shall formulate the national program for the development of work on disability, and local governments at and above the county level shall adopt corresponding programs and annual plans for their respective administrative areas with a view to ensuring that the undertakings for persons with disabilities develop in coordination with economic and social progress.

Competent departments of people’s governments at and above the county level shall be designated to mobilize, coordinate and provide guidance for and supervision over relevant institutions in their work concerning persons with disabilities.

People’s governments at all levels and departments concerned shall keep in close contact with persons with disabilities, solicit their opinions and fulfill their responsibilities in the work on disability.

Article 6 The State shall adopt measures to ensure that persons with disabilities, in accordance with the law and in various ways and manners, participate in the management of state affairs, economic and cultural undertakings and social affairs.

Opinions of persons with disabilities and their organizations shall be solicited in the formulation of laws, rules, regulations and public policies involving major issues concerning their rights and interests and the work on disability.

Persons with disabilities and their organizations have the right to put forward opinions and suggestions to state organs at various levels on the protection of the rights and interests and the development of the work on disability.

Article 7 The whole society should display humanitarianism, understand, respect, care for and assist persons with disabilities and support the work on disability.

The State shall encourage social organizations and individuals to offer donation and service to persons with disabilities.

State organs, social groups, enterprises, institutions and self-management organizations in urban and rural communities should perform their respective functions on disability.

State functionaries and other personnel engaged in the work on disability should fulfill their duties in accordance with law and try their best to provide quality services.

Article 8 China Disabled Persons’ Federation (CDPF) and its local organizations shall represent the common interests of persons with disabilities, protect their lawful rights and interests, unite persons with disabilities and enhance education among them and provide service for them.

The CDPF and its local organizations shall conduct work on disability and mobilize social forces in developing the undertakings for persons with disabilities in accordance with laws, regulations and its constitution or as commissioned by the government.

Article 9 Legal fosterers of persons with disabilities must fulfil their duties towards their charges.

Guardians of persons with disabilities must fulfil their duties of guardianship and respect the will and safeguard the lawful rights and interests of their charges.

Family members and guardians of persons with disabilities shall encourage and help persons with disabilities to enhance their capability of self-reliance.

Domestic violence against persons with disabilities shall be prohibited. Maltreatment and abandoning of persons with disabilities shall be prohibited.

Article 10 The State encourages persons with disabilities to have a sense of self-respect, self-confidence, self-strength and self-reliance, and make contribution to socialist development.

Persons with disabilities should abide by laws and regulations, carry out their due obligations, observe public order and respect social ethics.

Article 11 The State shall undertake, in a planned way, disability prevention, strengthen leadership and publicity in this regard, popularise knowledge of maternal and infant health care as well as disability prevention, establish and improve mechanisms for the prevention, early detection and early treatment of birth defects, and mobilize social forces to take measures in dealing with disability-causing factors such as heredity, diseases, medication, accidents, calamity and environmental pollution, to prevent and alleviate disabilities.

The State shall establish a proper census system to conduct survey and analysis on the conditions of persons with disabilities.

Article 12 The State and society shall provide special protection, consolation and favourable treatment to servicemen and veterans with disabilities and persons disabled in the line of duty or in safeguarding the interests of the country and the people.

Article 13 People’s governments at various levels and departments concerned shall commend and award persons with disabilities who have achieved notable accomplishments in socialist development and those organizations or individuals who have done remarkable deeds in safeguarding the lawful rights and interests of persons with disabilities, promoting the work on disability and providing service for them.

Article 14 The third Sunday of May every year shall be designated as the National Day for Supporting Persons with Disabilities.

Chapter 2 Rehabilitation

Article 15 The State shall ensure that persons with disabilities enjoy rights to rehabilitation services.

People’s governments at all levels and departments concerned shall adopt measures to create conditions for rehabilitation of persons with disabilities, establish and improve the service systems and implement prioritised programs by stages to help persons with disabilities regain normal functions or compensate for lost functions, thus enhancing their ability to participate in social life.

Article 16 Realistic and practical rehabilitation programs shall be worked out to combine modern techniques with traditional Chinese techniques, and shall mostly be community–based with professional institutions playing the leading role and families of persons with disabilities as the basis. Emphasis shall be laid on projects which are practical, easily feasible and widely accessible, and high priority shall be given to salvage treatment and rehabilitation for children with disabilities. Science and technology for rehabilitation shall be developed, independent innovation shall be encouraged and efforts shall also be made in the research, exploration and application of new rehabilitation technologies so as to provide more effective service for persons with disabilities.

Article 17 People’s governments at various levels shall encourage and support social forces in building rehabilitation institutions for persons with disabilities.

Local people’s governments at various levels and departments concerned should organize and guide urban and rural community service networks, medical prevention and health care networks, organizations and families of persons with disabilities and other social forces in carrying out community-based rehabilitation programs.

Educational institutions, welfare agencies and other service organizations for persons with disabilities should create conditions for rehabilitation training activities.

Persons with disabilities under guidance from professionals and with help of relevant staff, volunteers and family members, should actively take part in training programs for functional recovery, and for acquiring self-care ability and work skills.

Article 18 Local People’s governments at various levels and relevant departments shall, in accordance with practical need, establish in a planned way medical rehabilitation departments (sections) in hospitals, set up rehabilitation institutions for persons with disabilities, and provide medical rehabilitation services, offer personnel training and technical guidance, and carry out scientific research.

Article 19 Medical colleges and other relevant schools shall, in a planned way, set up relevant disciplines to offer rehabilitation courses so as to develop different types of rehabilitation specialists.

The government and the society shall provide various forms of technical training to rehabilitation workers; popularize knowledge on rehabilitation among persons with disabilities, their family members, relevant staff and volunteers engaged in this work, and teach them rehabilitation methods.

Article 20 Government departments concerned shall organize and support the research, production, supply and maintenance of rehabilitation equipments and supplementary appliances.

Chapter 3 Education

Article 21 The State shall guarantee the right of persons with disabilities to education.

People’s governments at various levels shall take the education of persons with disabilities as a component of the state educational program, include it into their overall planning, and strengthen leadership and guidance, so as to create conditions for persons with disabilities to receive education.

The government, the society, and schools shall take effective measures to address difficulties faced by children and juveniles with disabilities in schooling, and help them complete compulsory education.

People’s governments at various levels shall provide free textbooks to students with disabilities and those from poor families with disabled parents, and offer them boarding allowances and other aids when they are receiving compulsory education; and as regards these people who are receiving other forms of education, assistance shall be given according to relevant regulations of the State.

Article 22 Education for persons with disabilities shall be developed in terms of both the expansion of access and upgrading of the levels, with more emphasis on the former. Priority shall be given to guaranteeing compulsory education and developing vocational and technical education while efforts shall be made to carry out preschool education and gradually develop education at and above the senior high school level.

Article 23 Education for persons with disabilities shall be based on their physical and psychological features and needs, which should be carried out according to the following principles:

1) Strengthening physical and psychological compensation and vocational and technical training in addition to moral and knowledge teaching;

2) Adopting ordinary or special educational methods according to different types of disabilities and the ability of learning;

3) Allowing appropriate flexibility in determining the curricula, teaching materials and methods and the age requirement for admission and graduation for special education.

Article 24 People’s governments above county level should deploy educational institutions according to the number of persons with disabilities, their allocation, and the type of disabilities, and encourage private donation and participation in the running of schools.

Article 25 Ordinary educational institutions shall be open to students with disabilities who are able to receive ordinary education, and offer them facilitation and help.

Ordinary primary schools and junior high schools must accept children or juveniles with disabilities who are able to adapt themselves to life and study there; ordinary senior high schools, secondary polytechnic schools, and institutions of higher learning must accept students with disabilities who meet the state admission requirements and shall not deny their admission because of their disabilities; in case of such denial, the students concerned, his family members or guardians are entitled to appeal to relevant authorities, and the latter shall instruct the schools concerned to enroll the student.

Ordinary institutions of preschool education shall admit children with disabilities who are able to adapt themselves to the life there.

Article 26 Preschool educational institutions for children with disabilities, classes for children with disabilities attached to ordinary preschool educational institutions, preschool classes of special educational institutions, welfare institutions for children with disabilities and families of these children shall be responsible for preschool education of children with disabilities.

Special schools at or below junior high school level and special classes attached to ordinary schools shall be responsible for the implementation of compulsory education for children and juveniles with disabilities who are not able to respond to ordinary education.

Special schools and special classes attached to ordinary schools at or above senior high school level, as well as institutions of vocational and technical education for persons with disabilities, shall be responsible for providing general curriculum education at or above senior high school level and vocational and technical education for eligible persons with disabilities.

Institutions offering special education should have venues and facilities suitable for the study, rehabilitation and daily life of persons with disabilities.

Article 27 Government departments concerned, employers of persons with disabilities and relevant social organizations shall carry out anti-illiteracy education, vocational training, entrepreneurship training and other forms of adult education for persons with disabilities and encourage them to tap their potential through self-teaching.

Article 28 The State shall systematically set up various forms of normal colleges and disciplines for special education at various levels. Special education classes attached to ordinary normal schools should be established to train and develop teachers for special education. Ordinary normal schools shall offer curricula or lectures on special education so that teachers in ordinary education may have some necessary knowledge about special education.

Teachers of special education and sign language interpreters shall enjoy allowances for special education.

Article 29 Government departments concerned shall organize and support the research and application of Braille and sign language, the compilation and production of teaching materials on special education, and the research, production and supply of teaching apparatus and other auxiliary facilities for special education.

Chapter 4 Employment

Article 30 The State shall protect the right of persons with disabilities to work.

People’s governments at various levels shall formulate overall plans on employment for persons with disabilities and create conditions for their employment.

Article 31 Both concentrated and scattered employment shall be provided to persons with disabilities. Preferential policies as well as protective and supporting measures shall be adopted to gradually create more stable and appropriate employment environment for persons with disabilities through multiple channels, at various levels and in a variety of forms.

Article 32 The governments and the society shall set up welfare enterprises for persons with disabilities, blind massage institutions, and other enterprises and institutions of welfare nature to offer concentrative job opportunities for persons with disabilities.

Article 33 The State shall introduce a quota scheme of employment to provide jobs for persons with disabilities.

Government agencies, social organizations, enterprises, public institutions, and private-run non-enterprise entities shall, in accordance with the quota stipulated in relevant regulations, arrange job opportunities for persons with disabilities, and offer them appropriate work and positions. Those who cannot reach the quota as prescribed in relevant regulations shall fulfill their obligation to guarantee job opportunities for persons with disabilities in accordance with relevant state regulations. The State encourages employers to over fulfill their obligation to employ more persons with disabilities.

The concrete measures on the employment of persons with disabilities shall be formulated by the State Council.

Article 34 The State encourages and supports the efforts of persons with disabilities to find their own jobs or set up their own businesses.

Article 35 Local people’s governments at various levels and community organizations in rural areas shall organize and facilitate persons with disabilities in the rural area to engage in planting, husbandry, handicraft industry and other forms of production.

Article 36 The State shall implement preferential tax treatment, according to law, for enterprises and employers who have fulfilled or over fulfilled their quota obligations to employ workers with disabilities, welfare institutions that has a significant staff of persons with disabilities, and self-employed disabled workers, and shall provide them with assistance in production, management, technology, capital, materials and workplace, etc. The State shall exempt administrative fees for self-employed disabled workers.

Local people’s governments and departments above county level shall identify certain products and businesses suitable for people with disabilities, give priority to welfare enterprises for persons with disabilities to work on such businesses and determine which products are to be produced exclusively by such enterprises on the basis of their special features.

The government in procurement shall give priority to products and services made by welfare enterprises for persons with disabilities, when other conditions are the same.

Local governments at all levels shall create public welfare jobs suitable for persons with disabilities.

Competent authorities shall, in verifying and issuing business licenses, give priority to persons with disabilities who apply for such licenses for self-employment.

Departments concerned shall provide assistance for persons with disabilities engaged in various kinds of labor in rural areas by ways of production services, technical guidance, supply of farm materials, purchasing and marketing of farm and sideline products and credit issuance.

Article 37 Public employment service institutions set up by relevant governmental departments shall provide free employment services to persons with disabilities.

Employment service institutions set up by disabled persons’ federations shall organize free vocational guidance, introduction and training, so as to provide help to persons with disabilities and potential employers.

Article 38 The State shall protect the property ownership and the independent decision-making right of welfare enterprises and institutions for persons with disabilities, whose lawful rights and interests shall not be violated.

No discrimination shall be practiced against persons with disabilities in recruitment, employment, obtainment of permanent status, promotion, determining technical or professional titles, payment, welfare, holidays and vacations, social insurance or in other aspects.

Enterprises and institutions where persons with disabilities work shall provide appropriate working conditions and labor protection based on the characteristics of disabled workers, and shall make renovations where necessary on workplaces, work equipments and life facilities in light of their actual needs.

The State shall take measures to protect the lawful rights and interests of visually impaired persons working in therapeutical or health care massage businesses.

Article 39 Enterprises and institutions where persons with disabilities work shall provide in-service technical training for disabled employees with a view to upgrading their skills and expertise.

Article 40 No organization or individual shall force persons with disabilities to work through violence, threat or illegal restriction of personal freedom.

Chapter 5 Cultural Life

Article 41 The State shall protect the equal right of persons with disabilities to participate in cultural life.

People’s governments at all levels and departments concerned shall encourage and assist persons with disabilities to participate in various forms of cultural, sports and recreational activities and shall create conditions to enrich the spiritual and cultural life of persons with disabilities.

Article 42 Cultural, sports and recreational activities for persons with disabilities should be based on communities, integrated into public cultural life and geared to the different characteristics and needs of different categories of persons with disabilities with a view to bringing about extensive participation.

Article 43 The government and society shall adopt the following measures to enrich the spiritual and cultural life of persons with disabilities:

1) Reflect the life of persons with disabilities through radio, film, television, press, books, the Internet and other media in the interests of persons with disabilities.

2) Organize and support the compilation, writing and publication of Braille books, audio books and other reading materials for the visually impaired and other persons with disabilities; establish special section of Braille books and audio books for visually impaired persons in public libraries.

3) Offer TV programs in sign language, set up radio programs specially designed for persons with disabilities and add subtitles or narrations to more TV programs and movies.

4) Organize and support persons with disabilities for mass cultural, sports and recreational activities, stage special art performances, hold sports games for persons with disabilities and participate in major international contests and interactions.

5) Provide facilities and accommodations for persons with disabilities at places of cultural, sports, recreational and other public activities and set up in a planned way activity centers for persons with disabilities.

Article 44 The government and society shall encourage and assist persons with disabilities to engage in literature, art, education, science, technology and other creative work beneficial to the people.

Article 45 The government and society shall promote mutual understanding and exchanges between persons with disabilities and their fellow-citizens, publicize the work on disability and deeds of assisting persons with disabilities, advocate self-accomplishment among people with disabilities, and foster a social environment of unity, friendship and mutual help.

Chapter 6 Social Security

Article 46 The State shall protect the right of persons with disabilities to various social security means.

The government and society shall take measures to improve the social security network for persons with disabilities, secure and improve the life of persons with disabilities.

Article 47 Persons with disabilities and their employer units shall sign up for social insurance in accordance with relevant state regulations.

Mass self-governing bodies at the primary level both in urban and rural areas as well as families of persons with disabilities shall encourage and assist persons with disabilities to sign up for social insurance.

For those persons with disabilities with financial difficulties, social insurance subsidies shall be granted according to relevant state regulations.

Article 48 People’s governments at various levels shall provide relief subsidies for basic-living such as education and housing through various channels for persons with disabilities with financial difficulties.

Local people’s governments above county level shall take other measures to secure the life of families of persons with disabilities who still have great financial difficulties after being guaranteed minimum living allowances.

People’s governments at various levels shall provide relief and subsidy according to regulations for the basic medical care, rehabilitation services and installment and replacement of necessary assistive devices.

Local governments at various levels shall provide nursing subsidies where appropriate for persons with disabilities who cannot take care of themselves in everyday life.

Article 49 Local people’s government at various levels shall provide for, in accordance with relevant regulations, persons with disabilities who have no working capabilities, no legal fosterers or financial resources or whose fosters are incapable to provide for them.

The State shall encourage and facilitate non-governmental forces to establish welfare homes and fostering institutions for persons with disabilities.

Welfare homes and fostering institutions for persons with disabilities and their staff shall not insult, abuse or desert persons with disabilities.

Article 50 People’s governments above county level shall provide convenience and preferential treatment for persons with disabilities where appropriate in taking public transport vehicles. Persons with disabilities shall be permitted to carry on board their indispensable equipment free of charge.

Blind persons shall be able to take public transport such as bus, tram, subway, ferry free of charge with valid certificate. Mailing and delivery of publications for blind persons shall be free of charge.

The State shall encourage and assist telecommunication, radio and TV service providers to provide preferential treatment for persons with visual, or hearing, or speech disabilities.

People’s government at various levels shall gradually increase other types of care and support for persons with disabilities.

Article 51 Government departments concerned and organizations of persons with disabilities shall open and improve channels for citizens to provide donation and service for persons with disabilities, encourage and assist the development of philanthropic undertakings for persons with disabilities, as well as public welfare activities such as volunteer programs to help persons with disabilities.

 Chapter 7 Accessible Environment

Article 52 The State and society shall take measures to make facilities more accessible and to eliminate barriers in information communications so as to provide an accessible environment for persons with disabilities to participate in social life on an equal basis with others.

People’s governments at various levels shall conduct overall planning and coordination and strengthen supervision and management for the building of an accessible environment.

Article 53 Construction and renovation of accessible facilities shall cater for the real needs of persons with disabilities.

Newly-built, renovated or expanded buildings as well as roads and transport facilities shall meet the state engineering codes relating to accessible facilities.

In line with state regulations relating to accessible facilities, people’s governments at various levels and competent authorities shall gradually renovate existent facilities, especially public service facilities closely related to the daily work and life of persons with disabilities.

Accessible facilities shall be kept maintained and protected.

Article 54 The State shall take measures to create conditions to eliminate barriers in information communications for persons with disabilities.

People’s governments at various levels and competent authorities shall take measures to facilitate access to public information for persons with disabilities.

The State and society shall research and develop technologies and products of information communications for persons with disabilities.

For school entrance exams, career qualification exams and placement exams which persons with visual disabilities take part in, Braille or electronic exam paper or assistance from specialized staff shall be available.

Article 55 In public service institutions and public places, information in voice notice, text signs, sign language, or Braille as well as prioritized service and auxiliary aid shall be made available to persons with disabilities.

Public transport facilities shall gradually meet accessibility requirements. Public parking lots shall devote certain parking space, wherever possible, for the use of persons with disabilities.

Article 56 Competent departments in charge of the organization of elections shall facilitate persons with disabilities to vote in elections. Braille ballots shall be available wherever possible.

Article 57 The State shall encourage and support the research and development of accessible auxiliary equipment and transport facilities.

Article 58 Persons with visual disabilities shall comply with relevant state regulations when entering public places with guide dogs.

Chapter 8 Legal Liabilities

Article 59 Where the lawful rights and interests of persons with disabilities are violated, the offended shall have the right to launch complaints to organizations of persons with disabilities. The organizations shall safeguard the lawful rights and interests of persons with disabilities and have the right to ask competent departments for investigation and action. The competent departments shall make such investigation and action and offer a reply.

Organizations of persons with disabilities shall provide support to persons with disabilities who need help in resorting to litigation for rights protection.

Where the interests of a certain group of persons with disabilities are violated, organizations of persons with disabilities shall have the right to ask competent departments to make investigations and hold the offenders accountable.

Article 60 Where the lawful rights and interests of persons with disabilities are violated, the offended shall have the right to ask competent departments to deal with the case in accordance with law, or submit application to arbitration institutions, or appeal to people’s courts in conformity with law.

For persons with disabilities who need legal aid or judicial assistance due to financial difficulties or other reasons, local legal aid institutions or people’s courts shall provide legal aid or judicial assistance in accordance with law.

Article 61 Whoever, in violation of this law, rejects, delays or holds back the complaint, appeal or report relating to the violation of the rights and interests of persons with disabilities, or retaliates against the one who launches the complaint, appeal or report, shall be ordered to rectify his wrong doing by the organization to which he belongs or higher level authorities. Disciplinary measures shall be taken against the people in charge and others directly responsible.

Where, not in compliance with his public duties, a civil servant fails to stop actions which violate the rights and interests of persons with disabilities or fail to offer necessary help to the harmed, which leads to serious consequences, the organization to which he belongs to or higher level authorities shall take disciplinary measures against the people in charge or others directly responsible.

Article 62 Where, in violation of this law, the dignity of persons with disabilities is degraded or undermined through mass media or other means, competent authorities in charge of culture, radio, film, television, publication and the press or others shall have the matter redressed based on their respective mandate and give administrative penalties in accordance with law.

Article 63 Where, in violation of this law, educational institutions refuse to admit students with disabilities or use additional conditions not defined by the State to limit the entrance of students with disabilities, competent authorities shall have the matter redressed and take disciplinary measures against the people in charge or others directly responsible.

Article 64 Where, in violation of this law, discrimination against persons with disabilities occurs in recruitment for work, competent authorities shall have the matter redressed. Victim workers with disabilities shall have the right to appeal to peoples’ court.

Article 65 Where, in violation of this law, staff in welfare or fostering institutions of persons with disabilities insult, maltreat, or abandon persons with disabilities, disciplinary measures shall be taken against people in charge or others directly responsible. Administrative penalties shall be given if the behavior runs counter to public security management.

Article 66 Where, in violation of this law, newly built, renovated or expanded buildings as well as roads and transport facilities fail to meet the state engineering standards relating to accessible facilities, or the accessible facilities are not timely maintained or protected, which leads to serious consequences, competent authorities shall deal with the case in accordance with law.

Article 67 Whoever, in violation of this law, violates the lawful rights and interests of persons with disabilities shall, if other laws or regulations exist, be given administrative penalties as defined in those other laws and regulations; or shoulder civil responsibilities if loss of property or other harms is incurred; or shoulder criminal responsibilities in accordance with law if a crime is committed.

Chapter 9 Supplementary Provision

Article 68 This law shall enter into force as of July 1st, 2008.

(Adopted at the Fourth Session of the Sixth National People’s Congress on April 12, 1986 and promulgated by Order No. 37 of the President of the People’s Republic of China on April 12, 1986)

Section 2 Guardianship

Article 16 The parents of a minor shall be his guardians.

If the parents of a minor are dead or lack the competence to be his guardian, a person from the following categories who has the competence to be a guardian shall act as his guardian:

(1) paternal or maternal grandparent;

(2) elder brother or sister; or

(3) any other closely connected relative or friend willing to bear the responsibility of guardianship and having approval from the units of the minor’s parents or from the neighbourhood or village committee in the place of the minor’s residence.

In case of a dispute over guardianship, the units of the minor’s parents or the neighbourhood or village committee in the place of his residence shall appoint a guardian from among the minor’s near relatives. If disagreement over the appointment leads to a lawsuit, the people’s court shall make a ruling.

If none of the persons listed in the first two paragraphs of this Article is available to be the guardian, the units of the minor’s parents, the neighbourhood or village committee in the place of the minor’s residence or the civil affairs department shall act as his guardian.

Article 17 A person from the following categories shall act as guardian for a mentally ill person without or with limited capacity for civil conduct:

(1) spouse;

(2) parent;

(3) adult child;

(4) any other near relative;

(5) any other closely connected relative or friend willing to bear the responsibility of guardianship and having approval from the unit to which the mentally ill person belongs or from the neighbourhood or village committee in the place of his residence.

In case of a dispute over guardianship, the unit to which the mentally ill person belongs or the neighbourhood or village committee in the place of his residence shall appoint a guardian from among his near relatives. If disagreement over the appointment leads to a lawsuit, the people’s court shall make a ruling.

If none of the persons listed in the first paragraph of this article is available to be the guardian, the unit to which the mentally ill person belongs, the neighbourhood or village committee in the place of his residence or the civil affairs department shall act as his guardian.

Article 18 A guardian shall fulfil his duty of guardianship and protect the person, property and other lawful rights and interests of his wards. A guardian shall not handle the property of his ward unless it is in the ward’s interests.

A guardian’s rights to fulfil his guardianship in accordance with the law shall be protected by law.

If a guardian does not fulfil his duties as guardian or infringes upon the lawful rights and interests of his ward, he shall be held responsible; if a guardian causes any property loss for his ward, he shall compensate for such loss. The people’s court may disqualify a guardian based on the application of a concerned party or unit.

Article 19 A person who shares interests with mental patient may apply to a people’s court for a declaration that the mental patient is a person without or with limited capacity for civil conduct.

With the recovery of the health of a person who has been declared by a people’s court to be without or with limited capacity for civil conduct, and upon his own application or that of an interested person, the people’s court may declare him to be a person with limited or full capacity for civil conduct.

(Deliberated and Adopted at the Judicial Committee of the Supreme People’s Court on January 26, 1988,No. 6 [1988] of the Supreme People’s Court and issued on April 2, 1988)

The General Principles of the Civil Law of the People’s Republic of China (hereinafter referred to as the General Principles of the Civil Law) came into force as of the date of January 1st, 1987. We hereby put forward the following opinions on the issues encountered in the implementation of the General Principles of the Civil Law:

1. Citizens

1. On Issues concerning the Capacity for Civil Rights and Capacity for Civil Conducts

(1) A citizen’s capacity for civil rights shall begin from his birth. The time of birth shall be subject to proof by his household register; if he has no proof of household register, the birth certificate issued by the hospital in which he was born shall apply. If there is no hospital certificate, other relevant certificate shall be referred to for determination.

(2) A citizen who has reached the age of 16 but not 18 and who can earn income through his own labor and is able to maintain the ordinary living of the local masses, he may be regarded as a person with full capacity for civil conduct with the main source of income from his own labor.

(3) Whether any civil activity conducted by a minor aged 10 or older is appropriate to his age and intellect or not may be determined from such aspects as the degree of connection of the conduct with his own life, whether the minor himself can understand such conduct as to his intellect and foresee the consequence of the corresponding conduct, and the amount of objects of the conduct.

(4) The determination of whether any civil activity conducted by any mentally ill person who is unable to recognize his own conduct is appropriate to his mental health may be made from such aspects as the degree of connection of the conduct with his own life, whether he himself can understand such conduct as to his mental health and foresee the consequence of the corresponding conduct, and the amount of objects of the conduct.

(5) A mentally ill person (including an imbecile) may be determined as a person who cannot identify his own conduct if he has no judgment ability and self-protection ability and does not know the consequences of his conduct; if he lacks judgment ability and self-protection ability for more complicated things or greater conducts, and cannot foresee the consequence of his conduct, he may be determined as a person who is unable to fully recognize his own conduct.

(6) In case any person with no capacity for civil conduct or with limited capacity for civil conduct accepts rewards, donations, or remunerations, no other person may claim the invalidity of the above-mentioned conducts by the reason that the person has no capacity for civil conduct or with limited capacity for civil conduct.

(7) Whether a party suffers from psychosis, the people’s court shall identify according to the judicial psychiatry or determine by referring to the diagnosis and identification of the hospital. Under the condition that there is no condition for the diagnosis and identification, it may also determine it by referring to the recognized state of mental health of the party, but shall be within the limit that the interested parties have no objection.

(8) Where any party or his interested party proposes that one party suffers from the psychosis (including dementia), and the people’s court believes it necessary to make a determination, it shall make judgment on whether the parties have the capacity for civil conducts in accordance with the special procedures as prescribed by the Civil Procedure Law (for Trial Implementation). Trials shall be conducted in accordance with the special procedures as prescribed in the Civil Procedure Law (for Trial Implementation) for determining whether a mentally ill person (including an imbecile) is a person with limited capacity for civil behavior.

(9) The place where a citizen lives for over one year consecutively after leaving the domicile is the habitual residence, excluding the case when the citizen lives in the hospital for medical treatment. Before a citizen moves to another place after moving out of the place where his residence is registered and has no habitual residence, the place where his residence is registered shall still be the domicile.

2. On Guardianship Issues

(10) The duty of guardianship of a guardian shall include: protect the personal health of his wards, take care of the life of the wards, manage and protect the property of his wards, and act as the agent of his wards to conduct civil activities, take charge of and educate on the wards, act as agent of his ward to file litigation in case the legal rights and interests of his ward is infringed upon or the ward has any dispute with any other person.

(11) The guardianship ability of a guardian shall be determined according to such factors as the physical health and economic conditions of the wards, and the connection between the guardian and his ward in life, etc..

(12) The close relatives as prescribed in the General Principles of the Civil Law shall include: spouse, parents, children, brothers and sisters, paternal or maternal grandparent, grandchildren, and maternal grandchildren.

(13) The provisions of Article 16 of the General Principles of Civil Law shall be applied for the determination of guardians for minors who suffer from mental illness.

(14) When designating guardians, the people’s court may regard the items (1) (2) and (3) of paragraph 2 of Article 16 of the General Principles of the Civil Law and the items (1) (2) (3) (4) and (5) of paragraph 1 of Article 17 as the sequence for designating guardians. In case the persons who has the qualification of guardianship in the first sequence have no guardian capacity or is bad to the wards, the people’s court may, in light of the principle of favoring the wards, determine the guardians by choosing the best one in the persons who have the qualification of guardianship in the second sequence. If the ward has identification ability, his opinions shall be solicited according to the circumstances. A guardian may be one person or may be several persons in the same one order.

(15) In case the persons who have the qualification of guardianship determine the guardians by agreement, the guardian who is determined by agreement shall undertake guardianship liabilities to the wards.

(16) In case any dispute arises over the acting of guardians, the relevant organizations shall make designation in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 3, Article 16 or paragraph 2, Article 17 of the General Principles of the Civil Law. If anyone lodges a lawsuit to the people’s court without designation, the people’s court shall reject it.

(17) In case the relevant organization designates guardians in light of the provisions of the General Principles of the Civil Law, if the designated person is notified in writing or orally, the designation shall be deemed as valid. If the designated person is dissatisfied with the designation, he shall lodge a complaint to the people’s court within 30 days from the morrow after receiving the notice. If he files a suit beyond the time limit, it shall be dealt with as the alteration of guardianship relation.

(18) A guardian shall not be altered without permission after being designated. If anyone alters the guardian without permission, the originally designated guardian and the guardian being altered shall undertake guardianship liabilities.

(19) In case the designated person is dissatisfied with the designation and files a lawsuit, the people’s court shall make judgment on keeping or withdrawing the designated guardian according to the provisions of Article 14 of the present Opinions. If the judgment withdraws the original designation, another guardian may be designated at the same time. The trial of such cases shall be carried out by applying the special procedures as prescribed in Civil Procedure Law (for Trial Implementation) by analogy. The guardianship liability before the people’s court makes judgment shall be borne by the person who has the guardianship qualification in light of the sequence of designated guardians.

(20) In case a guardian fails to perform guardianship duties or infringes the legal rights and interests of the wards, and other person or entity that has guardianship qualification files a complaint to the people’s court in accordance with the provisions of Articles 16 and 17 of the General Principles of the Civil Law to require the guardian to undertake civil liabilities, the case shall be tried in light of common procedures; if the above-mentioned person or entity pleads altering the guardianship relations, the case shall be tried in light of special procedures; if the party requires both undertake civil liability and alter guardianship relation, the case shall be tried separately.

(21) After a spouse is divorced, the party living together with the children has no right to cancel the guardianship right of the other party to the children, but excluding the circumstances that the party that does not live together with the children has criminal acts, abusing acts to the children or is obviously bad to the children, and the people’s court believes the guardianship may be cancelled.

(22) A guardian may entrust part or all the guardianship duties to others. In case it is necessary to undertake civil liabilities due to the tortious acts of the ward, the liabilities shall be borne by the guardian, unless there are different stipulations; if the entrusted person really has fault, he shall undertake several and joint liabilities.

(23) Where after one party of a spouse dies, the other party sends the child to any other person for adoption, if the adoption has no bad effect to the healthy growth of the child, and legal adoption formalities have been gone through, the adoption relation shall be deemed as valid; the other person that has the guardianship qualification shall not claim the invalidation of the adoption relation on the ground that he has not agreed to the adoption.

Chapter I: General Provisions

Chapter II: Promoting psychological well-being and the prevention of mental disorders

Chapter III: Diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders

Chapter IV: Rehabilitation from Mental Disorders

Chapter V: Safeguard Measures

Chapter VI: Legal Responsibility

Chapter VII: Supplementary Provisions

Chapter I: General Provisions

Article 1: This law is formulated to develop mental hygiene undertakings, regulate mental hygiene services and protect the lawful rights and interests of those with mental disorders.

Article 2: This law applies to activities within the territory of the People’s Republic of China developed to maintain and enhance citizens’ mental health, to prevent and treat mental disorders and to advance rehabilitation activities for those with mental disorders.

Article 3: Mental hygiene work puts into practice the directive of putting prevention first and adheres to the principal of integrating prevention, treatment and rehabilitation.

Article 4: The security of persons with mental disorders’ personal dignity, physical person and property are not to be infringed.

The law protects the lawful rights and interests of persons with mental disorders in areas such as education, labor, medical treatment and receipt of material assistance from the nation and society.

Relevant units and individuals shall maintain the secrecy of information from which the identities of persons with mental disorders might be deduced, such as their names, images, addresses, workplaces and medical history materials; except when lawful performance of professional duties requires it be released.

Article 5: The entire society shall respect, understand and show compassion for persons with mental disorders.

Organizations and individuals must not discriminate, demean or mistreat persons with mental disorders, and must not illegally limit the personal freedom [physical freedom]of persons with mental disorders.

News reports and literary or artistic works etc. must not include content that discriminates against or demeans persons with mental disorders.

Article 6: Mental hygiene work implements the comprehensive management mechanism of government organization’s leading, each department having responsibility for its own duties, households and workplaces striving to fulfill their duties and the joint participation of entire society.

Article 7: People’s governments at the county level and above lead mental hygiene work; put it in the national economic and social development plan; establish and perfect mental disorder prevention, treatment and rehabilitation services systems; fully establish mental hygiene work coordination mechanisms and systems of responsibility and evaluate and supervise the mental hygiene work undertaken by relevant departments.

Village or town governments and sub-district offices, in accordance with their actual local conditions, organize the performance of work such as preventing occurrences of mental disorders and promoting rehabilitation of those with mental disorders

Article 8: The State Council administrative departments of health manage mental hygiene work for the entire nation. Administrative departments of health under people’s governments at the county level and above manage mental hygiene work in their areas.

Judicial administration, civil administration, public security, education, human resources and social security and other departments under people’s governments at the county level and above are responsible for relevant mental hygiene work within the scope of their particular professional responsibilities.

Article 9: Guardians of persons with mental disorders shall perform their guardianship duties and protect the lawful rights of interests of persons with mental disorders.

Domestic violence against persons with mental disorders or the abandonment of persons with mental disorders is prohibited.

Article 10: The China Federation of Disabled Persons and its local organizations mobilize social forces to carry out mental hygiene work, as provided by laws and regulations or as entrusted by the government.

Villagers’ committees and residents’ committees carry out mental hygiene work and provide assistance to the local government’s mental hygiene work as provided by laws and regulations.

The nation encourages and supports unions, communist youth groups, the women’s federations, the Red Cross, scientific and technical associations and other groups to carry out mental hygiene work in accordance with law.

Article 11: The nation encourages and supports the furtherance of training of professional personnel for mental hygiene work, preservation of the lawful rights and interests of mental hygiene workers and strengthening of the professional mental health establishment.

The nation encourages and supports the furtherance of research into scientific mental hygiene techniques; the development of modern medicine, Chinese traditional medicine and psychology; and improving the level of science and technology for preventing, diagnosing, treating and rehabilitating mental disorders.

The nation encourages and supports the furtherance of international exchange and cooperation in the field of mental hygiene.

Article 12: All levels of people’s government and relevant departments under people’s governments at the county level and above shall adopt measures to encourage and support organizations and individuals providing volunteer services to persons with mental disorders, contribute to mental health affairs and establish public interest mental hygiene facilities.

Organizations and individuals making outstanding contributions in mental hygiene work will be given commendations and awards in accordance with relevant national regulations.

Chapter II: Promoting psychological well-being and the prevention of mental disorders

Article 13: All levels of people’s government and relevant departments under people’s governments at the county level and above shall adopt measures to strengthen work for the promotion of mental hygiene and prevention of mental disorders, and increase citizens’ mental health levels.

Article 14: Emergency response plans formulated at all levels of people’s government and relevant departments under people’s government at the county level and above shall include content on psychological assistance. When emergencies occur, people’s governments performing centralized leadership or organizing emergency response shall, in accordance with the specific conditions of the emergency, follow the provisions in the response plan to organize psychological assistance work.

Article 15: Workplaces shall create an environment beneficial to the physical and mental health of employees and keep a watch on employees’ mental health; focused mental health education shall be developed for employees at certain periods of career development or employees working in special positions.

Article 16: All levels and types of schools shall implement mental hygiene knowledge education for students; hire or provide mental health teachers and guidance staff, and may establish a mental health office to carry out mental health education for students. Preschool organizations shall carry out mental health education appropriate for young children’s special characteristics.

If a natural disaster, unexpected injury, public security incident or other event that might affect students’ mental health occurs, schools shall immediately organize professional staff to carry out psychological assistance for the students.

Teachers shall study and understand relevant mental hygiene knowledge, keep watch on students’ mental health situation, and properly guide and encourage students. All levels of people’s governments ’administrative departments of education and schools shall emphasize teachers’ mental health.

Schools and teachers shall discuss students’ mental health situation with parents or other guardians and close relatives.

Article 17: Medical personnel further disease diagnosis and treatment services and shall follow requirements of diagnostic standards and treatment norms to provide mental health counseling to patients; when it is discovered that a patient may have a mental disorder, they shall suggest he go to a medical establishment in keeping with this law for assistance.

Article 18: Facilities such as prisons, detention centers, jails and compulsory in-patient drug treatment facilities shall develop mental hygiene knowledge propaganda for prisoners, persons lawfully detained, arrested or undergoing compulsory drug treatment; shall keep a watch on their mental health state and when necessary provide psychological consulting and counseling.

Article 19: Human resources and social security, education, health, judicial administration, public security and other departments under local people’s governments at the county level or above shall, within the scope of their individual professional responsibility, oversee and guide work units carrying out their mental disorder prevention obligations as per article 15-18 of this law.

Article 20: Villagers’ committees and residents’ committees shall assist the people’s government in their area and its relevant departments in developing community mental health guidance and mental hygiene knowledge propaganda and education activities to create a community atmosphere beneficial to residents’ physical and mental health.

Village and town health clinics or health service organizations shall provide technical guidance to villagers’ committees and residents’ committees in developing community mental health guidance and mental hygiene knowledge propaganda educational activities.

Article 21: Household members should care for one another, create a good and amiable home environment and raise awareness of mental disorder prevention; if it is discovered that a household member may have a mental disorder, [others]shall help them to immediately see a doctor, look after their life and take care of them.

Article 22: The nation encourages and supports news media and social organizations developing mental hygiene public interest propaganda, spreading mental hygiene knowledge and leading the public to pay close attention to mental health and the prevention of mental disorders.

Article 23: Psychological consultants shall raise the caliber of the profession and abide by practice norms to provide society with professionalized psychological consulting services.

Psychological consultants must not engage in psychotherapy or the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders.

Psychological consultants discovering that a person receiving consultation might have a mental disorder shall suggest that he seek treatment at a medical establishment that meets the requirements of this law.

Psychological consultants shall respect the clients’ privacy and protect their secrets.

Article 24: The State Council Administrative department of Health establishes a mental hygiene monitoring network, brings about a system of reporting serious mental illness onsets, organizes monitoring of issues such as mental disorder occurrence conditions, development trends and special subject reporting. The methods of mental hygiene monitoring and severe mental illness onset report management are formulated by the State Council Administrative Department of Health.

The State Council Administrative Department of Health shall, jointly with relevant departments and organizations, establish mechanisms for sharing mental hygiene work information, and putting into practice information integration and mutual exchange.

Chapter III: Diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders

Article 25: In launching activities for the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders, the following requirements shall be met and relevant formalities shall be completed in accordance with regulations on the management of medical establishments:

(1) Have certified psychiatric physicians and nurses appropriate for undertaking diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders;

(2) Have facilities and equipment sufficient to meet the requirements of diagnosing and treating mental disorders;

(3)Have enhanced diagnosis and treatment management systems and quality oversight systems.

Article 26: Article 26: The diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders shall respect and preserve the lawful rights and interests of patients, respect the principle of patients’ dignity, and ensure patients receive good mental hygiene services subject to current availability.

The State Council administrative departments of health will organize the formulation of mental disorder classifications, diagnostic standards and treatment norms .

Article 27: The diagnosis of mental disorders should be based on mental health states.

Except where the law provides otherwise, an individual may not be medically evaluated to determine whether they have a mental disorder against his will.

Article 28: In addition to an individual voluntarily going to a medical establishment to have a mental disorder diagnosed, close family members may deliver a person suspected of having a mental disorder to a medical establishment for a mental disorder diagnosis. For vagrants whose family cannot be located and who are suspected of having a mental disorder, the local civil administration and other relevant departments will, according to their division of labor, help to deliver them to a medical establishment for mental disorder diagnoses.

Where a person suspected of having a mental disorder acts to hurt himself or endanger the safety of others, or there is a risk that he will hurt himself or endanger the safety of others, his close relatives, workplace or local public security organs shall immediately adopt measures to stop him, and deliver him to a medical establishment for mental disorder diagnosis.

Medical establishments receiving a person suspected of having a mental disorder may not refuse to perform a diagnosis of him.

Article 29: Diagnosis of mental disorders shall be made by certified psychiatric physicians.

Medical establishments receiving persons suspected of having a mental disorder as per Article 28, paragraph 2 of this law, shall keep him on site and immediately assign a certified physician in psychiatric practice to perform a diagnosis and put forth a conclusion without delay.

Article 30: In-patient therapy for mental disorders follows a voluntariness principle.

When the diagnostic conclusion and symptoms assessment shows that the patient has a severe mental disorder and one of the following conditions also applies, he shall be given in-patient therapy:

(1) He has already exhibited self-harming conduct or there is a danger of self-injury;

(2) He has already exhibited conduct that endangers the safety of others or there is danger that he will endanger the safety of others.

Article 31:Where a person with a mental disorder exhibits the circumstances described in Article 30, paragraph 2(1) of this law, with the consent of his guardian, the treatment facility shall implement in-patient therapy; when the guardian does not agree, the treatment facility may not implement in-patient therapy. Guardians shall look after and manage persons with mental disabilities living in their homes.

Article 32: Where a person with a mental disorder exhibits the circumstances described in Article 30, paragraph2(2) of this law, if the patient or his guardian disagree with the diagnosis that he needs in-patient therapy, or don’t agree to give the patient in-patient therapy, they may request a second diagnosis and evaluation.

Those requesting a second diagnosis in accordance with the previous paragraph shall, within 3 days of receiving the diagnostic conclusion, make a request to the original medical establishment or another medical establishment with lawful credentials. The medical establishment undertaking the second diagnosis shall, after receiving the request, assign two certified physicians in psychiatric practice, but not including the physician who performed the initial diagnosis, to perform the second diagnosis and issue a second diagnostic conclusion. The certified physicians performing the second diagnosis should go to the medical establishment treating the patient to meet in person and interview the patient, and the medical establishment shall facilitate.

Those objecting to the second diagnostic conclusion may act on their own to commission a lawfully credentialed evaluation organization to perform a medical evaluation for mental disorders; medical establishments shall publicly make known a list of certified evaluation organizations and their contact information. Evaluation organizations accepting a commission shall appoint two or more of its evaluaters who have the relevant professional certification to perform the evaluation together and put forth an evaluation report without delay.

Article 33: Evaluators shall go to the treating medical establishment to meet and interview the patient in person, and that medical establishment shall facilitate. If evaluators or their close relatives have an interest in the evaluation that might influence the neutrality, objectivity or fairness of their evaluation, they shall recuse themselves.

Article 34: Evaluation organizations and evaluators should respect the relevant laws, regulations and regulatory provisions, respect science, abide by professional ethics, follow procedures, techniques and operational norms for evaluation of mental disorders, and, in accordance with law, independently perform the evaluation and put forward a fair and objective evaluation report.

Evaluators shall make a record of the evaluation process and sign their name to it. The contents of the record should be true, objective, accurate and complete; a written or audio copy shall be properly preserved.

Article 35: Where the second diagnostic conclusion or evaluation report show that it cannot be confirmed that the patient has a severe mental disorder or requires in-patient therapy, the medical establishment may not perform in-patient therapy on him.

Where the second diagnostic conclusion or evaluation report shows that a person with a mental disorder exhibits a circumstance as in Article 30 paragraph 2(2) of this law, his guardian shall agree to treat the patient with in-patient therapy. Where the guardian obstructs the in-patient therapy or the patient leaves the therapy without authorization, the public security organs may assist the treatment facility in adopting measures to carry out in-patient therapy.

Before the relevant organizations release a second diagnostic conclusion or evaluation report, the medical establishment that has received the person with a mental disorder shall perform therapy on him in accordance with treatment norms.

Article 36:Where a person with a mental disorder who has been shown by a diagnostic conclusion to require in-patient treatment is unable to complete the formalities for in-patient treatment himself, his guardian will complete the formalities; where the patient is a vagrant whose family cannot be located, the formalities may be completed by the relevant department sending him for diagnosis.

Where a person with a mental disorder exhibits the circumstance described in Article 30, paragraph 2(2) of this law, and his guardian does not complete the in-patient treatment formalities, the patient’s workplace, villagers’ committee or residents’ committee will complete the formalities and the medical establishment will make a record in the patient’s medical history.

Article 37: Treatment facilities and their medical staff shall inform the patient or his guardian of the rights he has during the course of diagnosis and treatment.

Article 38: Treatment facilities shall allot appropriate facilities and equipment to protect the physical safety of those seeking treatment and in-patient therapy patients, prevent them from being harmed, and create as normal as possible a living environment and lifestyle for in-patient therapy patients.

Article 39:Treatment facilities and their medical staff shall abide by diagnostic standards and treatment norms for mental disorders, formulate treatment plans and inform patient or their guardians of the treatment plan’s and method’s goals and possible consequences.

Article 40:Where persons with mental disorders inside a treatment facility exhibit or are going to exhibit conduct that harms themselves, endangers the safety of others or disrupts treatment, the medical establishment and its medical staff may, when there are no other alternative measures available, restrain them, isolate them or use other protective treatment measures. Imposition of protective treatment measures shall be in accordance with diagnostic standards and treatment norms and the patients’ guardian shall be informed after the measures are taken.

Treatment facilities must not compel persons with mental disorders to engage in labor to produce goods.

Article 41:Medication of persons with mental disorder shall be for the purposes of diagnosis and treatment and use safe, effective medicines; medication must not be used for purposes other than diagnosis and treatment.

Treatment facilities must not compel persons with mental disorders to engage in labor to produce goods.

Article 42:The use of surgery for the purpose of treating mental disorders for persons undergoing in-patient therapy in accordance with Article 30, paragraph 2 of this law is prohibited.

Article 43:Medical establishments performing the following therapies on persons with mental disorders shall inform the patient or his guardian of the treatment risks, alternative treatment plans and other circumstances, and shall also obtain the patient’s written consent; if it is not possible to obtain the patient’s opinions, they shall obtain his guardian’s written consent and have the facility’s ethics committee approve it:

(1) surgery that causes an internal organ to lose function

(2) Experimental clinical care for treatment of mental disorders

In performing the treatment in (1) of the above clause, if because of urgency it is not possible to locate the guardian, the approval of the medical treatment facility’s responsible person and ethics committee shall be obtained.

Experimental clinical therapy that is not related to treating mental disorders on persons with mental disorders is prohibited.

Article 44:Persons with mental disorders undergoing voluntary in-patient therapy may request to leave the facility at any time and the medical establishment shall consent.

For persons with mental disorders undergoing in-patient therapy under Article 30, paragraph 2(1) of this law, their guardian may request that the patient leave the facility at any time and the medical establishment shall agree.

If a medical establishment feels that a person with a mental disorder described in the preceding two paragraphs is not suitable for release, it shall state its reasons; if the patient or his guardian still request release, a certified physician shall make a detailed record of the notification process in the medical history materials and also raise post-release medical suggestions; the patient or guardian shall sign their name in confirmation.

For persons undergoing in-patient therapy under Article 30, paragraph 2(2) of this law, if the medical establishment feels the patient may leave the facility, it shall immediately inform the patient and his guardian.

A medical establishment shall, on the basis of the person with a mental disorder’s condition, promptly organize a certified physician in psychiatric practice to make an examination and assessment of patients in in-patient therapy under Article 30, paragraph 2 of this law. If the assessment results show that the patient does not need to continue in-patient therapy, the medical facility shall immediately notify the patient and his guardian.

Article 45:If a person with a mental disorder leaving the facility is unable to complete release formalities himself, his guardian shall complete them for him.

Article 46:Medical establishments and their medical staff shall respect resident patients with mental disorders’ rights such as to communication and meeting visitors. Except for temporary restrictive measures necessary due to acute onset of symptoms or to avoid obstructing treatment, patients’ rights such as to communication and meeting visitors must not be limited.

Article 47:Medical establishments and their medical staff shall accurately record information such as persons’ with mental disorders’ symptoms, treatment methods, medication use, and use of restraints or isolation in the medical history materials and accurately inform patients or their guardian. Patient and their guardians may read and copy the medical history materials, unless the patients’ reading or copying the medical history materials would have a negative impact on their therapy. Medical history materials are to be preserved for not less than 30 years.

Article 48:Medical establishments may not, because a person has a mental disorder, shirk or refuse to provide him treatment for other illness falling within the scope of their normal medical service.

Article 49: Guardians of persons with mental disorders not in in-patient treatment should properly look after them, ensure that they follow the medical prescription to take medicine on time and attend follow-up visits or therapy. Villagers’ committees, residents’ committees and the patients’ workplace etc., shall comply with the patients’ or their guardian’s requests to provide necessary help to a patient.

Article 50:Administrative departments of health under people’s governments at the county level and above shall periodically review medical establishments in their administrative region that perform mental disorder diagnosis and treatment, on the following topics:

(A) Whether relevant personnel, facility and equipment meet this law’s requirements;

(B) Whether diagnostic and therapeutic activities accord with provisions of this law, diagnostic standards and treatment norms;

(C) Whether procedures for implementing in-patient treatment are in accord with the provisions of this law;

(D) Whether the lawful rights of persons with mental disorders are being protected in accordance with law.

Administrative departments of health under local people’s governments at the county level or above implementing the review mentioned above shall hear the comments of persons with mental disorders and their guardians; if conduct in violation of this law is discovered, they shall immediately put a stop to it , order corrections, and handle the situation according to law.

Article 51:Psychological therapy activities shall be developed within treatment facilities. Personnel specializing in psychological therapy may not engage in diagnosis of mental disorders, must not provide prescriptions to those with mental disorders or provide surgical treatment. The regulation of psychological therapy techniques will be formulated by the State Council administrative departments of health.

Article 52:Facilities such as prisons and compulsory drug treatment centers shall adopt methods to guarantee prisoners or those receiving compulsory drug treatment, etc., who have mental disorders, receive therapy.

Article 53:Persons who have a mental disorder who violate the public security administration punishment law or violate the criminal law will be dealt with according to the provisions of the relevant laws.

Chapter IV: Rehabilitation from Mental Disorders

Article 54:Community rehabilitation organizations shall provide a venue and facilities for persons with mental disorders needing rehabilitation, and operate rehabilitation trainings for them in areas such as self-assisted living skills and social adjustment skills.

Article 55:Treatment facilities shall provide persons with severe mental disorders, who are living at home, with essential psychiatric drugs to continue therapy, and provide community rehabilitation organizations with guidance and support related to rehabilitation from mental disorders.

Community health service organizations, village and town health institutions and village health clinics shall establish a rehabilitation plan for persons with severe mental disorders, carry out periodic follow-up visits with persons who have severe mental disorders, guide them in taking medicine and furthering rehabilitative training and train their guardians in mental hygiene knowledge and caretaking. Administrative departments of health under people’s governments at the county level and above shall provide guidance and training to community health service organizations, village and town health institutions and village health clinics.

Article 56:Villagers’ committees and residents’ committees shall provide assistance to households of persons with mental disorders that are having difficulty, and make their situation and requests known to the local village or town people’s government, sub-district office or relevant departments under people’s governments at the county level and above, to help them resolve their actual hardships and create conditions for their integration to society.

Article 57:Organizations for handicapped persons or handicap rehabilitation institutions shall, on the basis of people with mental disorders’ rehabilitation needs, organize their participation in rehabilitation activities.

Article 58:Workplaces shall, on the basis of persons with mental disorders’ actual circumstances, arrange for them to undertake work within their ability, guarantee they receive equal benefits [treatment], arrange for them to attend necessary professional skills trainings, increase their professional abilities, create a suitable work environment for them and provide encouragement for work achievements.

Article 59:The guardians of persons with mental disorders shall assist them in carrying out rehabilitation trainings such as for self-assisted living skills and social adjustment skills.

If the guardians of persons with mental disorders require technical guidance in the course of caregiving, community health services organizations, village or township health institutions, village health centers or community rehabilitation organizations shall provide it.

Chapter V: Safeguard Measures

Article 60:Administrative departments of health under people’s governments at the county level and above, together with relevant departments, and in accordance with the requirements of the national economic and social development plan, will formulate a mental hygiene work plan and organize its implementation.

Mental hygiene monitoring and special topic surveys shall be the basis for formulating the mental hygiene work plan.

Article 61:People’s governments of provinces, autonomous regions and directly-governed municipalities, based on the actual conditions of their administrative district, do overall planning, consolidate resources, establish and perfect a mental hygiene services system, and strengthen the capacity of mental disorder prevention, treatment and rehabilitation services.

County level people’s governments, based on the actual conditions of their administrative district, do overall planning and establish community rehabilitation organizations for persons with mental disorders.

Local people’s governments at the county level and above shall adopt measures to encourage and support social forces in forming medical establishments for the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders and rehabilitation organizations for persons with mental disorders.

Article 62:All levels of people’s governments shall, according to the needs of mental hygiene work, increase the force of financial investment to ensure all necessary funding for mental hygiene work, and place mental hygiene work funding in the fiscal budget for the corresponding level.

Article 63:The nation strengthens the establishment of a base level mental hygiene services system, supports impoverished regions’ and remote areas’ mental hygiene work, ensures that urban communities’ and rural bases’ mental hygiene work has necessary funding.

Article 64:Medical colleges and universities shall strengthen psychiatric teaching and research, and in accordance with the actual needs of mental hygiene work, cultivate specialized psychiatric personnel to ensure talent is available for mental hygiene work.

Article 65: Comprehensive medical care establishments shall follow the State Council administrative departments of health to set up psychiatric clinics or psychotherapy clinics, increasing the capacity to prevent, diagnose and treat mental disorders.

Article 66:Medical establishments shall organize medical staff’s study of mental hygiene knowledge and related laws, regulations and policies.

Organizations engaging in the diagnosis, treatment or rehabilitation of mental disorders shall periodically organize medical staff and workers to carry out internal trainings and update mental hygiene knowledge.

Administrative departments of health under people’s governments at the county level and above shall organize medical staff to carry out mental hygiene training and raise their ability to recognize mental disorders.

Article 67:Teachers colleges and universities shall set up mental hygiene courses for students; medical colleges and universities shall set up mental hygiene courses for non-psychiatry majors.

Administrative departments of education under people’s governments at the county level and above’s trainings for teachers before they take a post and while at the post, shall have mental hygiene content and periodically organize mental health educators and counselors to carry out specialized training.

Article 68:Administrative departments of health under people’s governments at the county level and above shall organize medical establishments to provide basic public health services to those with severe mental disorders.

Treatment costs for persons with mental disorders follow the national regulations regarding social insurance and are covered by the basic medical benefits fund. Organizations handling medical insurance shall follow the relevant national regulations and include persons with mental disorders in the scope of the urban workers’ basic medical insurance, urban residents’ basic medical insurance or newly formed village cooperative medical insurance. County level people’s governments shall follow relevant national regulations and assist persons with severe mental disorders from families with economic difficulties to participate in the basic medical insurance. Departments such as human resources and social security, health, civil administration and finance shall strengthen coordination, simplify procedures, and have treatment costs covered by the basic medical benefits fund directly settled by medical establishments and insurance processing organizations.

Where persons with mental disorders still have difficulties after having the basic medical insurance pay treatment costs or who are unable to go through the basic medical insurance to pay treatment costs, the department of civil administration shall prioritize giving them assistance.

Article 69:For persons with severe mental disorders that qualify for the urban and rural minimum subsistence allowances, civil administration departments, together with other relevant departments, should immediately include them in the minimum subsistence allowance.

For persons with severe mental disorders who are within the targets of the rural “five guarantees;” and persons with severe mental disorders in cities who have no ability to work, no source of income and no person legally obligated to support, raise or provide for them, or the person legally obligated to support, raise or provide for them is not able to do so, the civil administration departments shall follow relevant national regulations to provide support and assistance.

If persons with severe mental illnesses who are not included in the previous two paragraphs have true hardship, the civil administration may adopt temporary assistance and other measures to help them resolve the hardships.

Article 70:Local people’s governments at the county level and above and relevant departments shall adopt effective measures to ensure that suitably aged children and youths with mental disorders receive compulsory education, aid persons with mental disorders who are able to work to engage in work according to their abilities and provide employment services to those who have already recovered.

The nation will provide tax benefits, in accordance with law, to workplaces that arrange to employ persons with mental disorders, and also provide assistance in areas such as production, operation, technology, capital, material goods, and locations.

Article 71:The dignity and personal safety of mental hygiene workers will not be infringed, and mental hygiene workers lawfully performing their professional duties are protected by law. The entire society shall respect mental hygiene workers.

People’s governments at the county level and above, as well as relevant departments, medical establishments and rehabilitation organizations shall adopt measures to strengthen employment protections for mental hygiene workers, raise the level of mental hygiene workers’ benefits and follow regulations to give appropriate bonuses. When mental hygiene workers are injured, handicapped or killed as a result of their work, compensation for their workplace injury or their family’s bereavement will follow relevant national regulations.

Chapter VI: Legal Responsibility

Article 72:Where administrative departments of health under people’s governments at the county level and above, and other relevant departments, have not yet carried out their mental hygiene work obligations under this law, or abuse their public power, neglect their obligations or break the law for personal gain, the relevant departments under the people’s government at the same level or the level above will order a correction, circulate a criticism, and give directly responsible management personnel, or other directly responsible persons, warnings, demerits or major demerits as disciplinary measures, and if there are serious consequences, demotion and dismissal or expulsion.

Article 73:Where medical establishments that do not meet requirements of this law engage in unauthorized diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders, administrative departments of health under the people’s governments at the county level or above will order them to stop the relevant treatment activities, give a warning and fine them between 5000 and 10,000 RMB, as well as confiscate illegal gains if there are any, and give or order that the directly responsible management personnel and other directly responsible personnel be given demotions, terminations or expulsions as disciplinary measures and revoke the professional credentials of medical staff.

Article 74: Where medical establishments and their staff have any of the following, administrative departments of health under the people’s governments at the county level or above shall order correction and give a warning, and, if the circumstances are serious, give or order that the directly responsible management personnel and other directly responsible personnel be given demotions, terminations or expulsion as a disciplinary sanction and may order involved medical staff to temporarily stop professional activities for 1-6 months:

(A) Refusal to make a diagnosis of a person delivered to them who is suspected of having a mental disorder;

(B) Failure to promptly evaluate and assess a patient receiving in-patient therapy under Article 30, paragraph 2 of this law or failure to handle the matter on the basis of the assessment conclusion.

Article 75:Where medical establishments and their staff have any of the following, administrative departments of health under the people’s governments at the county level or above shall order correction and give a warning, and give or order that the directly responsible management personnel and other directly responsible persons be given demotions, terminations or expulsion as a disciplinary sanction, and may order involved medical staff to temporarily stop professional activities for between 6 months to 1 year, and if the circumstances are serious, give them, or order them given, a disciplinary sanction of expulsion or revocation of their professional credentials.

(A) Violated the provisions of this law in using restraints, isolation or other ;

(B) Violated the provisions of this law to compel persons with mental disorders to labor;

(C) Violated the provisions of this law in performing surgery or using experimental clinical therapies on persons with mental disorders;

(D) Violated the provisions of this law to infringe on persons with mental disorders’ rights such as to communication and meeting visitors;

(E) Violated diagnostic standards for mental disorders and diagnosed someone who does not have a mental disorder as having one.

Article 76:In any of the following situations, the administrative departments of health and administrative departments of industry and commerce under the peoples’ governments at the county level or above, in accordance with their individual professional responsibilities, will order corrections, give warnings, fine between 5000 and 10,000 RMB, confiscate illegal gains if there are any; and if there are serious consequences, order a temporary 6 months to one year suspension of professional activities up to a revocation of professional certification or business license.

(A) Psychological counselors engage in psychotherapy or diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders;

(B) Personnel engaged in psychotherapy develop psychotherapy activities outside of a medical establishment

(C) Personnel specializing in psychotherapy engage in diagnosis of mental disorders;

(D) Personnel specializing in psychotherapy prescribe medication or perform surgery on persons with mental disorders.

If psychological counselors or persons specially engaging in psychotherapy cause another person to suffer physical, property or other losses , they are civilly liable in accordance with law.

Article 77:Relevant work units or individuals that violate the provisions of Article 4, paragraph 3 of this law and cause injury to persons with mental disorders have the responsibility to compensate them; disciplinary action shall also be taken against directly responsible workplace management personnel or other directly responsible personnel.

Article 78:Those violating the provisions of this law and having one of the following circumstances, causing persons with mental disorders or other citizens to suffer physical, property or other harm, bears responsibility for compensation in accordance with law:

(A) Intentionally delivering a person without a mental disorder to a medical establishment for treatment as a person with a mental disorder;

(B) The guardian of a person with a mental disorder abandons them or otherwise does not fulfill his guardianship obligations;

(C) Discriminating against, demeaning or mistreating a person with a mental disorder, infringing on their dignity or personal safety;

(D) Illegally limiting a person with a mental disorder’s personal freedom [physical];

(E) Other situations that infringe on the lawful rights and interests of persons with mental disorders

Article 79:Where the diagnostic conclusion put forth by a medical establishment shows that a person with a mental disorder shall be treated with in-patient therapy, but the guardian refuses, resulting in the patient causing physical or property harm to others, or the patient otherwise causes physical or property harm to others, his guardian shall bear civil liability in accordance with law.

Article 80:Those who in the course of the diagnosing, treatment, and evaluation of mental disorders, are belligerent, obstruct relevant personnel from performing their professional obligations under this law, or disrupt a medical establishment or evaluation organization’s work order, will be given public security administration punishments.

Those who violate this law’s provisions and engage in other conduct that violates the administration of public security will be given security administration punishments in accordance with law.

Article 81:Where violations of this Law constitute a crime, pursue criminal responsibility in accordance with law.

Article 82:Where persons with mental disorders or their guardians or close family members feel that an administrative organ, medical establishment or other relevant unit or individual have violated this law and infringed a person with a mental disorder’s lawful rights and interests, they may file suit in accordance with law.

Chapter VII: Supplementary Provisions

Article 83:Mental disorders, as referred to in this law, indicates a disturbance or abnormality in perception, emotion, cognition or other mental activity, brought on by any cause, which results in obvious mental suffering or a deficit in abilities such as social adjustment.

Severe mental disorders, as referred to in this law, indicates a mental disorder with severe symptoms that causes in the victim serious deficits in abilities like social adjustment, an incomplete understanding of his own well-being or of objective reality, or an inability to handle his own affairs.

A person with a mental disorder’s guardian, as referred to in this law, indicates a person who may assume guardianship under the relevant provisions of the General Principles of the Civil Law.

Article 84:The State Council and Central Military Committee will formulate administrative methods for the armed forces’ mental hygiene work.

Article 85:This law begins implementation on May 1, 2013.