Code of the District of Columbia

§ 24–531.01. Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) “Competence” means that a defendant has sufficient present ability to consult with his or her lawyer with a reasonable degree of rational understanding and has a rational, as well as a factual, understanding of the proceedings against him or her.

(2) “Court” or “Superior Court” means the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

(2A) “DDS” means the Department on Disability Services.

(3) “Defendant” means a defendant in a criminal case or a respondent in a transfer proceeding.

(4) “DMH” means the Department of Mental Health.

(5) “Incompetent” means that, as a result of a mental disease or defect, a defendant does not have sufficient present ability to consult with his or her lawyer with a reasonable degree of rational understanding or does not have a rational, as well as a factual, understanding of the proceedings against him or her.

(6) “Inpatient treatment facility” means:

(A) Saint Elizabeths Hospital;

(B) Any other physically secure hospital for the examination or treatment of persons with mental illness; or

(C) Any physically secure or staff-secure facility for the examination, treatment, or habilitation of persons with intellectual disabilities.

(7) Repealed.

(8) “Transfer proceeding” means a proceeding pursuant to § 16-2307 to transfer a respondent who is alleged to be a delinquent in a juvenile case from the Family Court to the Criminal Division of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia to face adult criminal charges.

(9) “Treatment” means the services or supports provided to persons with mental illness or intellectual disabilities, including services or supports that are offered or ordered to restore a person to competence, to assist a person in becoming competent, or to ensure that a person will be competent.

(10) “Treatment provider” means:

(A) The Department of Mental Health;

(B) The DDS;

(C) An inpatient treatment facility as defined in paragraph (6) of this section; or

(D) Any other entity or individual designated by the DMH or DDS to provide evaluation, examination, treatment, or habilitation pursuant to this chapter that:

(i) Is duly licensed or certified under the laws of the District of Columbia to provide services or supports to persons with mental illness or intellectual disabilities, or both; and

(ii) Has entered into an agreement with the District to provide mental health services or mental health supports or to provide services or supports to persons with intellectual disabilities.


(May 24, 2005, D.C. Law 15-358, § 101, 52 DCR 2015; Sept. 26, 2012, D.C. Law 19-169, § 22(a), 59 DCR 5567.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 16-2307.

Effect of Amendments

The 2012 amendment by D.C. Law 19-169 added (2A); substituted “intellectual disabilities” for “mental retardation” wherever it appears in (6)(C), (9), and (10); repealed (7), which formerly read: “’MRDDA’ means the Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities Administration”; substituted “DDS” for “The Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities Administration” in (10)(B); and substituted “DDS” for “MRDDA” in the introductory language of (10)(D).

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.