Decision Making Representation Order – An overview

A “decision-making representation order” refers to a legal mechanism provided for under the Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Act 2015. This Act aims to support decision-making by adults with impaired capacity in a way that is consistent with their human rights and preferences.

A decision-making representation order allows a person to appoint a decision-making representative to assist them with certain decisions if they are unable to make those decisions themselves due to impaired capacity. The decision-making representative can help the person understand the options available to them, communicate their wishes, and make decisions on their behalf in their best interests.

The Act also provides for other forms of support, such as decision-making assistants and co-decision-making agreements, to help individuals make decisions that affect their lives.

It’s important to note that the Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Act 2015 represents a significant shift towards a more supportive and rights-based approach to decision-making for people with impaired capacity in Ireland.

The steps involved in putting a Decision-making Representation Order in place include:

  1. Determine if the person meets the requirements for the order.
  2. Complete the necessary forms to apply for the order.
  3. Have the person assessed by a qualified assessor to determine their decision-making capacity.
  4. Submit the application forms, along with the assessment report, to the relevant authority.
  5. Wait for the authority to review the application and make a decision on the order.
  6. If the order is granted, ensure that it is documented and communicated to relevant parties.
  7. Monitor the person’s decision-making capacity and review the order as needed.

The formalities required as part of the court application for a Decision-making Representation Order may include:

  1. Filing a formal application with the court that outlines the details of the request for the order.
  2. Providing evidence to support the need for the order, such as medical assessments or expert opinions.
  3. Serving notice of the application to all relevant parties, including the person who the order concerns.
  4. Attending a court hearing to present the case for the order and answer any questions from the court.
  5. Following any additional requirements or directions set by the court in relation to the application.
  6. Obtaining a court order formally approving the Decision-making Representation Order, if the court grants the application.

The type of decisions that can be included in a Decision-making Representation Order may vary depending on the individual circumstances and the specific needs of the person for whom the order is being made.

However, some common types of decisions that can be included in such an order are:

  1. Decisions regarding healthcare and medical treatment.
  2. Decisions regarding personal care and living arrangements.
  3. Decisions regarding financial matters, such as managing assets and paying bills.
  4. Decisions regarding legal matters, such as entering into contracts or legal proceedings.
  5. Decisions regarding day-to-day activities and routine tasks.
  6. Any other decisions that the person is unable to make due to their qualifying condition.

A decision-making representative has several obligations, including:

  1. Acting in the best interests of the person for whom they are making decisions.
  2. Making decisions only in areas specified in the Decision-making Representation Order.
  3. Respecting the person’s wishes, preferences, values, and beliefs to the extent possible.
  4. Consulting with the person when making decisions, if the person is able to participate.
  5. Keeping the person informed about decisions that affect them.
  6. Keeping accurate records of decision-making processes and outcomes.
  7. Avoiding conflicts of interest and acting impartially.
  8. Seeking advice or assistance from professionals when needed.
  9. Complying with any legal requirements or instructions outlined in the order.
  10. Regularly reviewing and reassessing the person’s decision-making capacity and adjusting decisions as necessary.

For more information, click on Decision-making Representation Order, a straightforward leaflet to assist you in comprehending a decision-making representation order for appointing a decision-making representative.