‘If an individual has in years past paid him or herself for mental health aftercare services, which should have been paid for by public bodies, does that person have a valid restitution claim to be refunded the monies spent? The Court of Appeal in Richards v Worcestershire County Council  EWCA Civ 1998 has upheld the decision of Newey J at first instance, that a claimant can bring a private law action against public authorities under Part 7 of the CPR, when it is alleged that:
· the public authority was responsible for providing mental health aftercare services to the claimant pursuant to section 117 of the Mental Health Act 1983;
· aftercare services were received by the claimant; and
· those services were paid for by the claimant themselves.
Such a claim would be brought in restitution, on the basis that the payments made by the claimant served to relieve the public authority of liabilities which they ought to have been bearing under section 117.’
Community Care Blog, 18th December 2017