Intervention Application on Advance Medical Directives in the Supreme Court of India
Legalising ‘Living Wills’
Summary: Vidhi argues that the right to execute a living will is part of the right to die with dignity and assists the Supreme Court with an overview of global best practices.
Vidhi made a submission before the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the pending matter, Common Cause v Union of India (WP (C) 215 of 2005) where the legality of “living wills” in India is being considered. A living will is a document prepared in advance by a person indicating that treatment may be withdrawn to her in certain circumstances. Although no legislation currently provides for such living wills, we believe that the right to execute a living will arises from the Constitutional right to die with dignity as recognized by the Supreme Court of India in multiple cases in the past.
Through this submission, Vidhi hopes to assist in guiding the Supreme Court in laying down the law in consistency with judgements in the past and adhering to good international practice in this respect.