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Adult Social Care: Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) Guide - WNC

Adult Social Care: Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) Guide - WNC logo


The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) is a legal process that applies to people living in care homes or staying in hospital settings. It forms part of the Mental Capacity Act 2005. It may apply to adults who lack the mental capacity to decide whether they should live in a care home or be admitted to hospital.

The phrase "deprivation of liberty" may cause some anxiety and concern. However, there are occasions when people must be deprived of their liberty because it's in their best interests. DoLS exists to ensure people are kept safe and receive the care and treatment they need.

DoLS seeks to ensure that where someone is deprived of their liberty in a care home or hospital, the decision is independently scrutinised to confirm it is required and that the person's rights are being protected.

West Northants Council is the supervisory body responsible for all DoLS referrals for people who are ordinarily resident in West Northants. To determine ordinary residence please check the guidance here.

For more information, please visit Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS).

  • Brackley Area
  • Daventry Area
  • Northampton Area
  • Towcester Area
  • West Northamptonshire
  • Northamptonshire
Additional languages
Translation and/or Interpreting Available on Request
Age range
Suitable for ages from 18 years to 99 years
Referral route
Professional Referral
For people with
Special Educational Needs or a Disability (SEND)
Eligibility criteria
  • Age Range - Adulthood
  • Assessment Needed
  • Special Educational Needs or a Disability (SEND)
Provider category
Specialist Services - For those who require longer-term support


West Northamptonshire Council, One Angel Square, Angel Street
United Kingdom


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Last updated 10 April 2024