HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Concordia University School of Law

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Euthanasia in Europe Re-Redux

On January 10, in Fleming v. Ireland, the Irish High Court rejected the argument that assisted suicide should be legally permitted as a right of personal autonomy.  Explicitly disagreeing with the Canadian court in Carter v. Canada, the Court concluded that the risks of abuse were simply too great.  Interestingly, however, the Court also signaled that the Director of Public Prosecutions may exercise discretion not to prosecute in appropriate cases of assisted death.  The Court opined that it "feels sure that the Director in this of all cases would exercise her discretion as whether to prosecute or not.  This approach leaves the legislative ban intact while ensuring that the Director is afforded the fullest opportunity to consider what she may think are the special and extenuating factors arising from the harrowing experiences being endured by the plaintiff."

Recent posts to this blog have addressed euthanasia performed on Belgian twins and a British right to life case.


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