In March of 2017, the Law Commission of Ontario (the “LCO”) issued its report on legal capacity, decision-making and guardianship in Ontario. While not exclusive to elder law, these issues have a fundamental impact on older adults in the later stages of their lives. Ultimately, the report included 58 recommendations, notably:
- The creation of a specialized tribunal to adjudicate matters relating to capacity, substitute decision-making and guardianship;
- The option of appointing monitors, with access to relevant records, to oversee the actions of attorneys; and
- Requiring the delivery of a Notice of Attorney Acting form to the incapable person’s spouse, previous attorneys, and any other person listed in the Power of Attorney document.
Continuing with its focus on issues related to elder law, the LCO is now asking from input from Ontarians regarding their experiences dealing with and navigating through the last stages of life. The LCO is seeking input from older adults, their family members, and those who work in field related to elder care. The survey is part of the LCO’s Improving the Last Stages of Life Project, begun in 2015. The survey will address:
- Health care consent in the last stages of life;
- Advance care planning and goals of care discussions;
- Care transitions and planned deaths at home;
- Withdrawing and withholding treatment;
- Caregiver and family needs; and
- Medical assistance in dying.
If you would like to provide your input, link to the survey here.