Reforming best interests: the road towards supported decision-making

Barton-Hanson, Renu (2018) Reforming best interests: the road towards supported decision-making. Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law, 40 (3). pp. 277-298. ISSN 0964-9069 (doi:10.1080/09649069.2018.1493650)

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Abstract

Decisions under the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) may be made in a person’s best interest. This concept is objective, unclear and places discretion in the hands of the decision maker. Currently a person's wishes, feelings, beliefs and values are not accorded primacy status among the checklist of factors to be considered under s.4 MCA. In 2017, the Law Commission in their report on Mental Capacity and Deprivation of Liberty proposed amending the best interest test under s.4 of the MCA to require the decision maker to ascertain wishes and feelings and to also elevate the status of the ascertained wishes and feelings among the other factors under s.4.These proposals contained in a Draft Bill would be of general application under the Act. This paper argues that the trajectory begun by Lady Hale in the Supreme Court in Aintree in asserting the individual at the heart of her destiny and the Law Commission proposals are to be welcomed but do not go far enough to be aligned with the principle of supported decision making set out in international frameworks, such as the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Law > Law and Politics
Item ID: 24520
Notes on copyright: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law on 03/07/2018, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/09649069.2018.1493650
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Depositing User: Renu Barton-Hanson
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2018 17:12
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2019 08:45
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/24520

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