High Court to scrutinise restrictions on areas where P has capacity – Doughty Street Chambers

Posted December 11th, 2018 in autism, consent, Court of Protection, families, learning difficulties, news by sally

‘Mr Justice Hayden has handed down a judgment concerning LC, a young woman with autism and significant learning disabilities. During the course of proceedings which had lasted five years LC was assessed as having capacity to consent to sexual relations, marry, and make decisions about contraception; but to lack the capacity to make other decisions such as to conduct the proceedings, make decisions about her residence and about her contact with men. As a facet of LC’s autism she was preoccupied with seeking out sexual encounters and a care plan was formulated which permitted LC to have unsupervised contact with others. As the judge observed with “the enormous benefit of hindsight” this led to LC’s safety and dignity being compromised and placed an intolerable burden on those supervising her. The plan attracted significant public criticism. LC now resides in a care home but is able to spend time with her husband. In a sensitive judgment Hayden J endorsed LC’s treatment plan and directed a report from a female clinical psychologist, noting the obligation under the Mental Capacity Act to take steps to promote decision making capacity.’

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Doughty Street Chambers, 6th November 2018

Source: insights.doughtystreet.co.uk