MENTAL CAPACITY ASSESSMENT
IN-LINE WITH THE
MENTAL CAPACITY ACT 2005
The Mental Capacity Act 2005 states:
Two-stage functional test of capacity.
In order to decide whether an individual has the capacity to make a particular decision you must answer two questions:
Stage 1. Is there an impairment of or disturbance in the functioning of a person’s mind or brain? If so,
Stage 2. Is the impairment or disturbance sufficient that the person lacks the capacity to make a particular decision?
The Act states that a person is unable to make their own decision if they cannot do one or more of the following four things:
Understand information given to them
Retain that information long enough to be able to make the decision
Weigh up the information available to make the decision
Communicate their decision – this could be by talking, using sign language or even simple muscle movements such as blinking an eye or squeezing a hand
Five Principles of the Mental Capacity Act 2005.
A person must be assumed to have capacity unless it is established that he lacks capacity.
A person is not to be treated as unable to make a decision unless all practicable steps to help him to do so have been taken without success.
A person is not to be treated as unable to make a decision merely because he makes an unwise decision.
An act done, or decision made, under this Act for or on behalf of a person who lacks capacity must be done, or made, in his best interests.
Before the act is done, or the decision is made, regard must be had to whether the purpose for which it is needed can be as effectively achieved in a way that is less restrictive of the person's rights and freedom of action.
Mental Capacity Act 2005.
LAMONT Independent Social Work Practice Ltd
Elstree House, Watson’s Yard, High Street, Cottenham
Cambridge. CB24 8RX
Telephone - 01954 277378