Restrictions in his best interests? An “awkward interaction” between the Mental Capacity Act and sections 37 & 41 Mental Health Act

District Judge Glassbrook said that he recognised that there were only two options for RS: either he lived in X Home, or he returned to hospital.  “But I’m not talking about one placement compared with another. I’m asking why these restrictions are required.”  

Cataract surgery for a patient who’s refusing it

It can feel wrong to force someone to have medical treatment they say they don’t want.  It can also feel wrong to acquiesce to someone’s (non-capacitous) wishes, knowing that they will suffer and/or die as a result.

A trial of living at home – a “suspended sentence” of returning to care

By Jenny Kitzinger, 20th October 2021 Mr G desperately wants to live in his own flat – but this option is hanging by a thread.   After a series of court hearings at which he challenged his “detention” in residential care (via s.21A of the Mental Capacity Act 2015), he finally moved back into his ownContinue reading “A trial of living at home – a “suspended sentence” of returning to care”

A COVID Vaccination hearing: Observations of an aspiring medical student

By Eloise Crang, 19th October 2021 I’m a medical applicant, currently sitting my last year of A-levels studying Maths, Chemistry, and Biology, so I was delighted at the opportunity to observe a real-life medical ethics case in play. Having mainly read about these sorts of scenarios in medical books, or when revising for the situationalContinue reading “A COVID Vaccination hearing: Observations of an aspiring medical student”

When another assessment is not needed: Best interests decision-making for a patient with a prolonged disorder of consciousness

s going to be, what would he have decided? He was not going to decide that on the basis of a SMART score.”

What happens when Lasting Power of Attorney goes wrong?

“There had been a major family falling out between the LPA and her siblings. They saw her as “controlling”, “aggressive” and “paranoid” and said she had imposed unnecessary restrictions on their right to see their mother.” The judge said, ““I appreciate there’s a family dynamic, and it’s tragic to see it play out”. 

A court-authorised hip replacement

declaration ordering surgery was the right outcome. I saw a rigorous but caring and collegial environment in court, with a genuine commitment to involving P. Counsel for the parties adopted a clearly non-adversarial approach throughout. The focus for everyone was on making the right decision for P.

Suppressing transparency: A judge comments on a blog post in court

open justice. I had a physical reaction, my gut dropping like a stone, when HHJ Howells said what she did. Their status and power makes judges intimidating.  Barristers are used to the judge addressing them – and they are part of proceedings and can reply. This is not the situation for observers. I was shocked by what happened and this episode has caused me not a small amount of anxiety. I’m a bit worried about writing this account of what happened and how I felt about it. It’s taken me a long time to feel able to do so.

Home-owning resident of 50 years faces intervention by Council

By Daniel Cloake, 24th September 2021 A man whose identity is protected by court order faces temporary removal from his home of 50 years to enable building work and medical treatment to be carried out. I observed this attended (in-person) hearing (Case: 12014791 “JD -v- Ealing Council”) before the Senior Judge of the Court of Protection HHJContinue reading “Home-owning resident of 50 years faces intervention by Council”

Challenge to Lasting Powers of Attorney

By Claire Martin, 23rd September 2021 I observed a remote hearing (COP 13339015) at Lincoln Family Court on 6th September 2021. District Judge McIlwaine was presiding.  The case concerned a challenge to Lasting Powers of Attorney from the Office of the Public Guardian and was preparatory to a final 3-day hearing starting on 27th September 2021.  The applicant is P’s daughter,Continue reading “Challenge to Lasting Powers of Attorney”