European Court of Human Rights in Strassbourg
The European Court of Human Rights (Link)
European Convention on Human Rights (PDF)
HUDOC Database / Search Portal of The Court (Link)
Judgment of 29 April 2002 in the case of Diane Pretty v. the United Kingdom, application no. 2346/02 (Link)
Judgment of 20 January 2011 in the case of Haas v. Switzerland, application no. 31322/07, in French (Link)
Press Release on this judgement (PDF)
Press release regarding the Chamber Hearing in the case of Koch v. Germany, application no. 497/09 (PDF)
Decision of 31 May 2011 as to the admissibility of the case Koch v. Germany, application no. 497/09 (Link) and Press Release (PDF). The Court of Human Rights has declared the application admissible.
Judgment of 19 July 2012 in the case Koch v. Germany (Link)
Judgment of 14 May 2013 in the case of Gross v. Switzerland, application no. 67810/10 (Link)
Mrs. Debbie Purdy, an UK citizen suffering from multiple sclerosis, brought a case against the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Keir Starmer, to the Law Lords: she wanted to know whether or not her husband would be prosecuted by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) if he would help her to travel abroad to have an assisted suicide. The ruling forced the CPS to state exactly when it would take action against those who help their loved ones end their lives abroad.
Decision of 30 July 2009 by the House of Lords (Link)
Additional information by Debbie Purdy's lawyer (Link)
Decision of 10 August 2012 of the British Columbia Supreme Court (Link): Madam Justice Prowse of the BC Court of Appeal has denied the Attorney General of Canada’s attempt to prevent Gloria Taylor from exercising her court-approved right to die.
Gloria Taylor, who is terminally ill, received in June a constitutional exemption allowing her to receive a lethal prescription, under very stringent conditions. At the same time, BC Supreme Court Justice Lynn Smith also ruled that Canada’s law banning assisted suicide was unconstitutional and she gave parliament 12 months to fashion a new law. Since Ms Taylor was unlikely to live to benefit from any change in the law, Justice Smith afforded her an interim remedy to receive a doctor’s assistance.
Decision of 15 June 2012 of the British Columbia Supreme Court (Link): The BC Supreme Court has declared the absolute prohibition against assistance with suicide to be constitutionally invalid. In a 395-page decision, Madam Justice Smith gives the federal government 12 months to fashion a new law that allows assistance with suicide, subject to protecting the vulnerable from coercion and undue influence.
During the 12-month period and pending appeal, Gloria Taylor and any other person can apply for a constitutional exemption to receive lethal medication from a physician to end his or her life. The applicant must meet certain conditions, including requirements that he or she make a written request, be terminally ill and near death, of sound mind, and fully informed of treatment options such as palliative care.
United States of America
Decision of December 2009 by District Judge Dorothy McCarter of the Supreme Court of the State of Montana (PDF): Under the Constitution of Montana, Article II, paragraph 4 and 10, terminally ill Bob Baxter has the right to a dignified death and at the same time his physician has the right to being protected from prosecution.
Through this decision, in theory, Montana became the third US-State which has legalised physician-assisted-suicide
Decision of 6 February 2012 of the Supreme Court of the State of Georgia (PDF): Under the Constitutions of the State of Georgia and the United States of America, the State’s assisted-suicide law violates the free speech clauses. Said law held that anyone could face up to 5 years in prison “who publicly advertises, offers or holds himself or herself out as offering that he or she will intentionally and actively assist another person in the commission of suicide and commits any overt act to further that purpose.”
Writing for the court in a unanimous decision, Justice Hugh Thompson said: “The State has failed to provide any explanation or evidence as to why a public advertisement or offer to assist in an otherwise legal activity is sufficiently problematic to justify an intrusion on protected speech rights. Absent a more particularized State interest and more narrowly tailored statute, we hold the State may not, consistent with the United States and Georgia Constitutions, make the public advertisement or offer to assist in a suicide a criminal offense.”