Legal changes for medical treatment and guardianship

Victorians can now plan ahead for medical treatment to ensure their wishes are followed and their values considered when decisions are made on medical treatment after they lose medical decision-making capacity.

To understand more click Law Institute Victoria Law Institute’s Planning Ahead article.

In other legal updates the Victorian Government introduced new laws this week to better protect the rights of adults with disability to make and participate in decisions that affect their lives. The newly Guardianship and Administration Bill 2018 will replace 1986 laws to define decision-making capacity, including a presumption that a person has the capacity to make decisions unless evidence is provided otherwise.

New offences will be created to penalise guardians or administrators who dishonestly use their appointment for financial gain or cause loss to the represented person, attracting a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment.

The reforms also allow a person to be compensated for a loss caused by a guardian or administrator who breaches their duties.

Victoria Attorney General Martin Pakula said people living with impaired decision-making ability deserve the dignity and independence of being supported to make their own decisions wherever possible.

“We’re modernising the definition of decision-making to ensure Victorians with disability aren’t subjected to arbitrary and unnecessary intrusions on their right to make decisions affecting their lives,” he said. For more information click Guardianship Laws Overhauled.