Daily Archives: Wednesday 15 May 2013

Legal News of the Day: ECHR Says Swiss Assisted Suicide Laws Too Vague

On Tuesday, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Switzerland’s law on assisted suicide failed to provide sufficient guidelines on the extent of one’s right to die, as it was never clarified whether those guidelines European_Court_of_Human_Rights_Court_roomapplied only to those suffering from a terminal illness.  This violates Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects every individual’s right to respect for private and family life.  The question arose when an elderly Swiss woman, Alda Gross, who wished to end her life instead of becoming increasingly frail could not find a doctor to prescribe a lethal dosage because she had no clinical illness.  The court limited its ruling, deciding that Gross’s right to respect for her private and family life was violated without making a decision in regards to the substance of the Swiss law.