Medical aid in dying became legal in Canada in 2016. To qualify, individuals must complete several steps and meet strict legal requirements. The government plans to amend the law because a court has ruled that some of the requirements are invalid. A public consultation on the topic is now underway.
In January 2019, two Quebecers challenged the law after they were refused medical aid in dying. They had incurable degenerative illnesses but were not considered at the end of life and their deaths were not imminent. Therefore, they did not meet all the legal requirements to obtain medical aid in dying.
In September 2019, the Superior Court of Quebec ruled in their favour. The court gave the government six months to change the law. As a result, beginning on March 11, 2020, the “end-of-life” and “imminence of death” requirements will no longer apply.
Consulting the public
In response to this court decision in Québec, the Canadian government has decided to amend the law on medical aid in dying. This change would apply to the entire country. A consultation is now underway to get public input regarding the process and requirements for medical aid in dying.
If you’re interested in taking part in the consultation, you can complete the form available on the website of the Department of Justice Canada.
If the link to the English version of the form is not working, you can go to the French version and select “English” at the top right of the page.