Mental Capacity Act 2005
Five Statutory Principles
The Act is underpinned by five principles, which are contained within the act and explained in the Mental Capacity Act code of practice:
- a presumption of capacity – every adult has the right to make his or her own decisions and must be assumed to have capacity to do so unless it is proved otherwise
- the right for individuals to be supported to make their own decisions – people must be given all appropriate help before anyone concludes that they cannot make their own decisions
- that individuals must retain the right to make what might be seen as eccentric or unwise decisions
- best interests – anything done for or on behalf of people without capacity must be in their best interests
- least restrictive intervention – anything done for or on behalf of people without capacity should be an option that is less restrictive of their basic – as long as it is still in their best interests.