Success in ZZ appeal

April 16, 2024

Joseph O’Brien KC and Lucinda France-Hayhurst acted for the appellant in a successful appeal before Mrs Justice Theis (Vice President of the Court of Protection).

The appeal was allowed on all three grounds in that the lower court had been wrong to find that ‘Peter’ had capacity to (i) decide where to live; (ii) decide to engage in sexual relations; (iii) decide to marry. Theis J reiterated the need to avoid assessing decision-making in silos with respect to residence and care, and contact and sexual relations (citing Hull CC v KF at [24]); and to have in mind the overlap between different decisions so as to avoid incoherent decisions which make care planning impractical or impossible. The appeal also involved careful consideration of the impact of Peter’s urges and impulsivity (derived from his impairment) in the context of weighing up consent to engage in sexual relations.

Lucinda France-Hayhurst has written a summary of the judgment.

The full judgment is published on the National Archives.