Upcoming legislative change affecting medical treatment planning and decisions

We would like to let you know about an upcoming legislative change that will affect aspects of the State Trustees Power of Attorney Kit (Victoria) you are looking to purchase.

The Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 (Vic.) (Act) commences on 12 March 2018.

From that date, appointments relating to medical treatment decisions (including decisions about medical research procedures) will no longer be able to be made or revoked using the forms in the Kit, and the information in the Kit relating to such appointments and revocations will no longer be current.

What does this mean for me?

  • Up to and including 11 March 2018, all forms and information in the Kit remain valid for use.
  • Any appointment/revocation you have made or make (in accordance with the instructions in the Kit’s Planning Guide and forms) prior to or on 11 March 2018, will continue to be valid on and after 12 March 2018.

The following appointments, if made up to and including 11 March 2018 using the relevant forms in the Kit, will, from 12 March 2018, be taken to be the appointment of an ‘appointed medical treatment decision maker’ under the Act:

  1. The appointment of an agent or alternate agent under an enduring power of attorney (medical treatment);
  2. The appointment of an attorney or alternative attorney under an enduring power of attorney conferring power to make medical treatment decisions (e.g. an appointment authorising decisions for ‘personal matters’).

Which parts of the Kit are affected by the change?

From 12 March 2018, the forms in the Kit will no longer be valid for use to make or revoke appointments relating to medical treatment decisions. The appointment types affected are:

  1. the enduring power of attorney (medical treatment);
  2. an enduring power of attorney for personal matters where medical treatment decisions are intended to be covered; and
  3. the appointment of a supportive attorney in respect of medical treatment decisions (except for the revocation of such appointments).

Which parts of the Kit are not affected by the change?

The change will not affect forms and information in the Kit for appointments or revocations relating solely to:

  1. financial matters; and/or
  2. personal matters other than medical treatment decisions.

(Examples of personal matters that are not medical treatment decisions include: where and with whom you live; persons with whom you associate; what work, education or training, if any, you do; and daily living issues, such as diet, dress, etc.)

The form for revocation of a supportive attorney appointment will also not be affected by the change, even if the scope of the appointment extends to medical treatment decisions.

What if, after 12 March 2018, I want to make or revoke an appointment relating to medical treatment decisions?

If you proceed to purchase the Kit, State Trustees will email to you during April 2018 a free digital copy of the equivalent forms relating to medical treatment planning and decision making under the Act, together with explanatory background information.

You will be able to use the new forms and information to make appointments or revocations relating to medical treatment decisions.

More information about the Act

If you want to learn more about the Act, you will find some useful information on the website of the Office of the Public Advocate from 12 March 2018: www.publicadvocate.vic.gov.au

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us on (03) 9667 6444