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Filing a Marchman Act in Florida Involuntary Committal
Marchman Act Florida
Many times friends and relatives of an addict can feel absolutely helpless watching the person they care for sink deeper and deeper into their addiction. Most people resort to begging, threatening and even interventions in order to get the addict to seek help, often to no avail. However, in Florida, loved ones and friends can take legal action to get an addicted person help even against their will. It is called the Marchman act, and it may well save the life of an addict.
What is The Marchman Act?
The Marchman Act is a legal means by which a spouse, blood relative or three people with direct knowledge of a person addiction can get the addicted person evaluated and perhaps treated even against their will. You need to file for a hearing and during that hearing, you need to prove the following things about the addict.
- That the addict has lost all self-control over their addiction. Proofs may include such things as the addict lying or stealing to get money to support their habit or doing other things they would never have done prior to their addiction.
- That the addicted individual is likely to cause injury to themselves or someone else if they don’t receive help. Proofs for this may include visits to the hospital room for overdoses, violence or threats of violence against others, or talk of suicide.
- The lack of capacity of the addicted to appreciate the need to care for their addiction and the inability to make a rational decision regarding their care.
- The addicted person’s unwillingness to voluntarily get help for their addiction.
Filing the Paperwork and The First Hearing
While it is possible to fill out the paperwork and file it on your own it is often helpful to get legal assistance in doing so as it increases your chances of succeeding in court. Once you have filed the paperwork under the Marchman Act, a hearing date will be set. At the hearing, you will have to show your proofs and if the court agrees that the proofs are legitimate the judge will order the person be held against their will for 5 days during which they will be evaluated.
Evaluation and Recommendations
The addicted individual is then sent to a treatment facility where they are evaluated and recommendation concerning treatment is made. A second hearing is then set, and the court reviews the recommendations and decides if treatment is necessary and viable. If so they can order the addicted individual to a 60-day treatment program with the possibility of extending that treatment for additional 90 days.
If the addicted refuses to go for the court order treatment or leaves the facility before the program is completed then the addicted individual can be held in contempt of court and either ordered to return to the program or incarcerated. The threat of jail is often enough to get addicts to remain in treatment for the full length of time.
While there is no guarantee that the Marchman Act will ensure that an addicted individual will beat their addiction, it does offer them a chance to get clean sober, so they can consider their options with a clearer head.
Alternative Methods Instead of Marchman Act
If you are struggling with the idea of having to file a motion through the court systems in Florida, then a professional interventionist may be the answer. An interventionist can help you and your family overcome the individual in denial of their addiction to the substance. A professional orchestrated intervention can help determine the best possible way of successfully convincing the individual to seek treatment immediately. We are well trained in overcoming the obstacles many families face when trying to convey to their loved one they need help.
KD Consulting Corporation can also help with providing direct information on how to file the motion and the best steps in helping the individual receive treatment when they are unwilling. To learn more about our ways to file a motion or have a professional intervention contact our office at 866-631-0026.