When can religious indoctrination deprive an adult of capacity? EOA

In a guest post, Elijah Z Granet discusses yet another difficult case from the Court of Protection: the impact of childhood indoctrination on adult mental capacity.

Cults and new religious movements can have destructive effects on their members, particularly those whose childhood was passed in extreme religious environments. In the recent case of Re EOA [2021] EWCOP 20, the Court of Protection (Williams J) was forced to consider whether or not childhood religious indoctrination can be so extreme that it results in the deprivation of an adult’s liberty.

The facts

“EOA” is a 19-year-old man who, until his removal by the authorities age of 14, was subjected by his parents to “extreme religious and anti-social indoctrination” [1], which included elements of “radicalisation, coercion and control, “undue influence and duress” [7]. Continue reading