The devastating consequences of addiction are often apparent to everyone except the person in the midst of their disease. Substance use disorders can cloud an individual’s judgment, and they may not see the value of entering treatment or attempting to gain sobriety.
If you’re considering filing a Marchman Act Petition, call the professionals at Serenity House Detox & Recovery at 866.294.5306 to start the process and learn about a residential detox center that’s available to help.
What Is the Marchman Act?
With the Marchman Act in Florida, friends and family can file for involuntary addiction treatment for somebody who:
- Has made physical threats against others
- Is at risk for self-harm
- Has become so impaired they can’t make a rational decision about treatment
A successful Marchman Act Petition will result in an individual being brought in for mandatory assessment and further imposing court-ordered addiction treatment for up to 60 days.
These actions can break somebody out of a destructive downward spiral and introduce them to a life in recovery.
Filing a Marchman Act Petition
There are several steps to filing the Marchman Act in Florida. Consider these steps carefully before submitting a petition. However, don’t wait too long to do it. The risk of severe consequences, overdose, or legal troubles is typically high for individuals suffering the most from a substance use disorder.
Below, we’ve outlined the four steps to filing a Marchman Act in Florida:
1. Do Your Research
First and foremost, understand what you’re getting into with the Marchman Act. If your petition is successful, your loved one will need to undergo an assessment for three to five days.
If the assessment determines that the person has lost control of their substance use disorder, they may be sentenced to court-ordered addiction treatment for 60 days.
However, the state does not necessarily finance the treatment. To grant the petition, treatment must be accessible for the person who needs help. Many people fund this through their insurance, although some counties have state-funded programs available to help.
If neither of these options applies, payment must be provided by the petitioners or the person who needs care. It is highly advisable to make a financial plan for treatment before committing to the Marchman Act.
2. Complete and File the Paperwork
After you’ve completed your research, you can get the paperwork for the Marchman Act Petition at your local courthouse. Each county in Florida has different paperwork and requirements. Therefore, you should obtain and file paperwork in the county where you expect the order to be served.
After you complete and file the paperwork, the local magistrate will send your petition to the judge to sign. This process usually takes several days.
3. Local Sheriffs Will Enforce the Order
If the judge approves the petition, local sheriffs will then enforce the order. This can take time and isn’t always successful. The sheriff needs to locate the person needing help, and Marchman Act Petitions generally aren’t a high priority for them. In fact, it often takes multiple attempts to enforce the order.
4. The Person Needing Treatment Receives an Assessment
When the sheriff locates the person the petition was filed against, they will be taken to an assessment center against their will for up to five days. During this assessment period, officials will determine whether the person has lost control of their substance use and require extended treatment.
Involuntary Addiction Treatment at Serenity House Detox & Recovery
People who require a Marchman Act to start treatment usually have severe substance use problems and can benefit from a round-the-clock medical detoxification facility.
Serenity House Detox & Recovery can help make the transition to sobriety much safer and more comfortable and inspire people to pursue life in recovery.
Call us at 866.294.5306 to learn more about our programs and how we work with the court for Marchman Act Petitions.