An appeal by a psychiatric patient (“Sousa”) from the decision of the Consent and Capacity Board, in which they found her incapable in respect of her required treatment for various mental and physical disorders, was dismissed on the basis that the Board’s decision was substantiated by the facts, and no error of fact or law was discerned.

Administrative law – Mental health – Substitute decision maker – Consent to treatment – Consent and Capacity Board – Adult in need of protection

Sousa v. Klukach, [2003] O.J. No. 779, Ontario Superior Court of Justice, February 27, 2003, Greer J.

Sousa was an involuntary resident of the Clarke Site of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. Counsel for the respondent argued that, pursuant to section 4 of the Health Care Consent Act, Sousa did not meet the definition of being capable to consent to her own treatment, and, as such, no error of fact or law was made by the Board.

In considering the standard of review to be applied, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice held that the Consent and Capacity Board, as a specialized expert tribunal, was entitled to deference on the issues within its expertise. The standard of reasonableness was applied.

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice held that there was nothing unreasonable about the decision made by the Consent and Capacity Board.

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