Code of the District of Columbia

§ 16–2321. Disposition of child with mental illness or a substantial intellectual disability.

(a) If no previous examination has been made under section 16-2315 and the Division, after a factfinding but before a dispositional hearing, has reason to believe that a child has a mental illness or a substantial intellectual disability, it may order an examination as provided in section 16-2315.

(b) If as a result of the examination the child is found to have a mental illness or a substantial intellectual disability, the Division may, in lieu of other disposition, direct the appropriate authority to initiate commitment proceedings under Chapter 5 or 11 of Title 21. The Division may order the child detained in suitable facilities pending commitment proceedings.

(c) If the examination does not indicate that commitment proceedings should be initiated or if the proceedings do not result in commitment, the Division shall proceed to disposition pursuant to this subchapter.


(July 29, 1970, 84 Stat. 536, Pub. L. 91-358, title I, § 121(a); Sept. 26, 2012, D.C. Law 19-169, §§ 20(c)(1), 20(c)(3), 59 DCR 5567.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 16-2321.

1973 Ed., § 16-2321.

Effect of Amendments

The 2012 amendment by D.C. Law 19-169 rewrote the section heading, which formerly read: “Disposition of mentally ill or substantially retarded child”; substituted “has a mental illness or a substantial intellectual disability” for “is mentally ill or substantially retarded” in (a); and substituted “have a mental illness or a substantial intellectual disability” for “be mentally ill or substantially retarded” in the first sentence of (b).

Editor's Notes

Section 35 of D.C. Law 19-169 provided that no provision of the act shall impair any right or obligation existing under law.