RIVERSIDE (CBSLA.com) — A Riverside County Superior Court judge will hold a hearing Friday to rule on a lawsuit that seeks to suspend the California End of Life Option Act.
The controversial law gives terminally ill adults the option to request and obtain a doctor’s prescription for medication in order to decide whether to die while asleep if end-of-life suffering becomes unbearable.
The lawsuit has been filed by the Legal Defense Foundation, American Academy of Medical Ethics and several physicians.
Prosecutors claim it fails to “make rational distinctions” between terminally ill adults and “the vast majority of Californians not covered” by the law.
The California Attorney General’s Office filed a brief opposing the suit, which asserts that “common sense dictates that terminally ill patients, medically determined to have six months or fewer to live, are differently situated from all other California residents or patients who do not have such a terminal disease.”
The California End of Life Option Act originally took effect on June 9.
If the law is overturned, terminally ill adults and their families will be “forced to live through painful and prolonged deaths,” according to lawmakers.