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Mental Capacity Act

The Mental Capacity Act 2005 came into force in April 2007 to empower and protect people who do not have the ability to make their own decisions, especially about things like finance, social care, medical treatment and research arrangements.

This could be because they have:

  • A learning disability
  • Dementia
  • A mental health problem
  • A brain injury or a stroke.

The law aims to ensure that people who lack capacity to make decisions by themselves get the support they need to be as involved as possible in decisions about their lives.

It also outlines how an assessment of mental capacity should be made, in which situations other people can make decisions for someone who cannot act on their own and how people can plan ahead in case they become unable to make decisions in the future.

For more information see's advice on making decisions about your health, welfare and finances.

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