Sections 31B of the Crimes Act deals with Survivor of Suicide Pact.
If you encourage, counsel, aid or abet another person to commit suicide, you could face criminal charges, even if the suicide does not eventuate. Generally, it will be enough that the other person attempted to commit suicide.
Being charged with assisting or encouraging someone to commit suicide can be a highly distressing and upsetting experience. However, the first step when it comes to fighting the charges is understanding what the law says about suicide.
Section 31B says that if you are the survivor of a suicide pact, you cannot be charged with murder or manslaughter, however you may be charged with aiding, abetting or encouraging someone to commit suicide under section 31C.
A ‘suicide pact’ is an agreement between two or more persons which aims to result in the death of all persons involved.
If you wish to argue that you were part of a suicide pact, you will bear the onus of proving that a suicide pact existed.
Section 31B of the Crimes Act 1900, which deals with Survivor of Suicide Pact, reads as follows:
31B Survivor of Suicide Pact
(1) The survivor of a suicide pact shall not be guilty of murder or manslaughter but may be guilty of an offence under section 31C.
(2) In this section,
“suicide pact” means a common agreement between 2 or more persons having for its object the death of all of them, whether or not each is to take his or her own life, but nothing done by a person who enters into a suicide pact shall be treated as being done by the person in pursuance of the pact unless it is done while the person has the settled intention of dying in pursuance of the pact.
(3) The onus of proving the existence of a suicide pact shall lie with the accused person on the balance of probabilities.
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