Assited Decision Making

The concept of assisted decision making has been regularised by the Assisted Decision Making Capacity Act, 2015 which substantially assists vulnerable people in our society with decisions which they need to make.

The Act is underpinned by the following principles:

  • A person’s capacity will be assessed on the basis of his or her ability to understand the nature and consequences of a decision to be made by him or her.
  • A person will be deemed lacking capacity if he or she is unable to:
    • a) understand the information relevant to a decision that needs to be made
    • b) to retain that information long enough to make a voluntary choice
    • c) to use or weigh the information as part of the process of making the decision, or
    • d) to communicate his or her decision by any means
  • A person will be deemed able to understand information relevant to a decision if he or she is able to understand an explanation of it given to him or her in way that is appropriate to his or her circumstances.
  • Furthermore, simply because a person is unable to retain the information provided for a short period only will not prevent him or her from being regarded as having capacity to make a decision.
  • The fact that a person lacks capacity at a particular time does not prevent him or her from being regarded as having capacity to make decisions on the same matter at another time.
  • The fact that a person lacks capacity in respect of a decision on a particular matter does not prevent him or her as being regarded as having capacity to make decisions on other matters.
  • The Act creates individuals known as “interveners” to support relevant persons while enabling to have their voices heard and have their wishes followed where possible.
  • The Act re-enacts the provisions of the Powers of Attorney Act but requires Attorneys to comply with the new guiding principles.
  • The legislation relating to Wards of Court will be abolished and existing Wards of Court will be brought under the jurisdiction of the 2016 Act within three years of the commencement of this part of the Act.

If you require advice in relation to any of the services listed above or if you wish to receive copies of our client newsletters and / or our business ezines please contact us on 01-2960666 or at info@dillon.ie.