avoid the police becoming involved), the legal issues associated with the cleaning away of equipment, autopsies and coronial inquiries. This Chapter is not intended as legal advice. Rather, we hope to offer some important advice on how to safeguard your elected death while ensuring its aftermath is least traumatic for all concerned.
Do You have the Mental Capacity to Die?
One important factor in dying is ensuring you have the mental capacity to do so. If you have been diagnosed with dementia, for example, the authorities may try to prosecute those left behind. That is, if you were not able to make the decision for yourself, did your friends or family coerce you or decide now was the time for you to die on your behalf? Always be careful.
Indeed, in conventional medical circles, open talk about taking your own life can lead a person to be being certified as mentally incompetent. The mere mention of suicide is considered a symptom of a deeper underlying psychiatric illness (including depression). While one relatively recent psychiatric Canadian study found almost one third of suicides to be rational acts, such a finding is not widely accepted, at least within the medical profession. See: http://bit.ly/CanSuicideBeRational