Your Rights & Recipient Rights

Your Rights – Call the Recipient Rights/Customer Services Department for help at 989-895-2317

Recipient Rights Booklet

Recipient Rights Booklet – Spanish

Recipient Rights Booklet – Arabic

When you receive mental health services, Michigan’s Mental Health Code and other laws safeguard your rights. Staff are responsible to protect your rights when they provide services to you. You are encouraged to ask questions about your treatment and about your rights and to make suggestions that you feel are in your best interest. If you believe your rights have been violated, you should inform Recipient Rights.

(Mental Health Code Sec. 722; Administrative Rule 330.7035)

You have the right:

Not to be physically, sexually, or otherwise abused. (Sexual harassment is also considered abuse.)

Not to be neglected. If you have been abused or neglected, or suspect another recipient has been, you should report it right away to a staff person and to the Office of Recipient Rights.

(Mental Health Code Sec. 748, 946)

You have the right to:

Have information about your mental health treatment kept private. Information about you and your treatment cannot be given to anyone except as required or allowed by law. Listed here are situations when confidential information may be released:

  • If a law or a court order requires your records be released.
  • If you, or your legal representative, consents.
  • If needed to get benefits for you or to get reimbursement for cost of treatment.
  • If it is needed for research or statistical purposes, with certain safeguards regarding identification.
  • If you die and your surviving spouse or other close relative needs the information to apply for and receive benefits.
  • If you tell your mental health professional that you are going to harm another person, he/she may have to notify the police and the person you threaten to harm.

(Mental Health Code Sec. 748)

You have the right to see your record. Upon request, you or your legal representative may read or get a copy of all or part of your record. There may be a charge for the cost of copying. If you are denied access to your record, you, or someone on your behalf, may appeal the decision. Contact your rights officer/advisor for information about the appeal process.

(Mental Health Code Section 776)

If you believe that your rights have been violated, you or someone on your behalf should file a recipient rights complaint.

You may file a complaint by calling or visiting Bay Arenac Behavioral Health Authority’s Recipient Rights/Customer Services Department at (989) 895-2317, 909 Washington Ave, or by completing and submitting the form found on this page.

Your complaint must contain:

A statement telling the Rights Office what you are complaining about:

  • What rights you think have been violated
  • What you think will fix your complaint.

If you want help writing your complaint, the Recipient Rights/Customer Services Department will refer you to an advocacy organization for assistance. If no advocacy organization is available, the Rights Officer will assist you. Within 5 business days (not including Saturday and Sunday), after receiving your complaint, the Rights Office will provide you with a letter which tells you that your complaint was received. This letter will also tell you whether your complaint is going to be investigated and about the mediation process which you may use after the investigation is complete.

If the Rights Officer/Advisor investigates your complaint, he/she will decide if your rights have been violated and, if necessary, will recommend appropriate action to correct the violation.

The Rights Officer/Advisor should finish investigating your complaint no later than 90 days after it was received. You will get a written status report every 30 days until the investigation is complete.

When the investigation is complete, the Rights Officer/Advisor will submit an Investigative Report to the agency director. Within 10 business days after receiving this report, he/she will provide you with a written summary report.

(Mental Health Code Section 784-786)

After you receive a summary report, you have the right to file an appeal. An appeal must be written and sent within 45 days. You can file an appeal if you feel:

The investigative findings of the Rights Office were not consistent with the facts, or with the law, rules, or policies of the agency.

The action, or proposed action, of the agency director did not provide adequate resolution.
The Rights Office did not start, or finish, the investigation in a timely manner.

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