A section 21A hearing: Impressions from a veteran observer and the daughter of (a different) P in a s.21A case

By Celia Kitzinger and Anna (Daughter of P), 9th May 2022 Anna (not her real name) contacted the Open Justice Court of Protection Project towards the end of April 2022, saying that she’d been asked to attend a s. 21A directions hearing about her mother (in a care home, with Alzheimer’s) and was finding the Court ofContinue reading “A section 21A hearing: Impressions from a veteran observer and the daughter of (a different) P in a s.21A case”

Challenges in observing a (remote) hearing at Swansea Civil Justice Centre: Capacity for contact and sexual relations

By Celia Kitzinger, 6th May 2022 I had no idea what this hearing would be about.  I picked it at random because I had an hour free at 10am on the morning of Friday 22nd April, and thought I could profitably use it to perform my civic duty of supporting open justice in the Court of Protection.   Here’sContinue reading “Challenges in observing a (remote) hearing at Swansea Civil Justice Centre: Capacity for contact and sexual relations”

Capacity to make a Lasting Power of Attorney

By Clare Fuller, 3rd May 2022 I wanted to observe this hearing because it was listed as being concerned with the validity of a Lasting Power of Attorney. Here’s how it appeared in the Court of Protection list for First Avenue House in London: Midday20thApril 2022 Deputy District Judge Kaufman 13628180 CC -v- The Public GuardianContinue reading “Capacity to make a Lasting Power of Attorney”

Medical treatment, undue influence and delayed puberty: A baffling case

By Celia Kitzinger and Claire Martin, 2nd May 2022 The protected party at the centre of the case is a woman in her early twenties who has not experienced puberty, because she has not been provided with the recommended medical treatment for her “primary ovarian failure”. She has diagnoses of “mild learning disability” and “autismContinue reading “Medical treatment, undue influence and delayed puberty: A baffling case”

Treatment against his wishes but in his best interests (without direct evidence on litigation capacity)

By Celia Kitzinger, 29th April 2022 “Although his wishes and feelings are not to have this operation, those wishes and feelings are based on delusion… I give less weight to his views for that reason.[1]” So said Mrs Justice Arbuthnot at a hearing on 28th April 2022 concerning a man in his late 50s (Mr SH)Continue reading “Treatment against his wishes but in his best interests (without direct evidence on litigation capacity)”

Refusing to eat and declining a feeding tube: Capacity at issue

By Celia Kitzinger, 21st April 2022 The hearing concerned an application from an NHS Trust (represented by David Lawson) to insert a PEG-J tube under general anaesthetic and then to deliver clinically assisted nutrition and hydration (CANH) to a young woman (P) who was admitted to hospital having fractured her femur and is now refusing to eat. She’sContinue reading “Refusing to eat and declining a feeding tube: Capacity at issue”

More on Mr M: Medical recommendations, still awaiting discharge and final hearing plans

By Claire Martin, 12th April 2022 Mr M is still in hospital. He has now been there for 40 days.  He was originally taken to hospital under court order for assessment of his ulcerated legs, to enable medical recommendations to be made. We have previously blogged about this case, here, here and here. At this hearing[1] (12 noon, Friday 8th AprilContinue reading “More on Mr M: Medical recommendations, still awaiting discharge and final hearing plans”

The value of observing a case management hearing in the Court of Protection

By Helen Moizer, 7th April 2022 The value of observing a case management hearing in the Court of Protection. When I observed a Court of Protection hearing for the first time, I did not know what I was entering into or what to expect. Despite it being a video hearing link, I still felt apprehensiveContinue reading “The value of observing a case management hearing in the Court of Protection”

Two years on: A postscript to “Remote justice”

What families mean by “gravitas” (dignity, seriousness, solemnity) does not in fact reside in court architecture, coats of arms, wigs and robes, or rituals of address and behaviour. In my experience, these external manifestations of “justice” can sometimes seem rather ridiculous, and the “performance” element of the courtroom can alienate lay people and distract everyone from the serious business at hand. Rather, the “gravitas” families appreciate is a quality of attention, a focus, a willingness to engage, in depth, with the medico-legal and ethical issues before the court.

Absconded

The tension is between, on the one hand, P’s autonomy and freedom, and on the other keeping her safe from harm. As Ben McCormack put it, “she’s been locked up for her own good, but she doesn’t like it”