The Mental Capacity Act 2005 is a critical statute law for psychiatrists in England and Wales. Its best interests provision is fundamental to substitute decision-making for incapacitated adults. It prescribes a process of and gives structure to substitute decision-making. The participation of the incapacitated adult must be encouraged where practicable. In addition to this, ‘the best interests checklist’ must be applied in every case before a practitioner can arrive at a reasonable belief that the action or decision taken on behalf of an incapacitated adult is in his best interests. Most commentators have shown goodwill towards the workings of the Act and want it to succeed.
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