Guardians and/or administrators make “lifestyle” decisions for people who are unable to make decisions for themselves. They are appointed by VCAT, who acts in the best interests of the person with a disability. The person’s wishes need to be given effect wherever possible.


Philip Grano

Principal Legal Officer, Office of the Public Advocate

Disputes about medical treatment

VCAT is empowered to hear disputes under the Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 (Vic) (‘MTPD Act’).

Applications can be brought to VCAT by eligible people, including:

  • a health practitioner,
  • a medical treatment decision-maker;
  • a support person;
  • the Public Advocate;
  • any other person VCAT is satisfied has a special interest in the person’s affairs.

Application forms are available from VCAT’s website.

VCAT is also empowered to advise medical treatment decision-makers (s 83 MTPD Act).

Back to
Disability, mental illness and the law

Buy the chapter ‘Guardianship and medical treatment’