Common Law Advance Health Directives
There is no legislation in Tasmania that provides for statutory advance health directives. However, common law principles around advance health directives are applicable in Tasmania.
An advance health directive may be valid at common law if all of the following conditions are satisfied:
1 Capacity: The adult must have had capacity at the time the advance health directive is made and is able to communicate the decision in some way.
2 Voluntariness: The directive must be made voluntarily without coercion or undue influence.
3 Specificity: The adult intended the refusal to apply to the specific situation that later arose.
There are no formal requirements at common law that that mean an advance health directive needs to be in writing and be witnessed, though these elements will be persuasive in suggesting that the directive has been made and meets the requirements.
Further information, including relevant forms, is available from the following links: