For those who are unfamiliar with the Marchman Act, it is a relatively new law that will have a profound impact on addiction recovery in the state of Florida. In short, this law enables family members to seek help from Florida courts to have their loved ones who are struggling with drugs or alcohol involuntarily admitted into a rehab facility.
HOW DOES THE MARCHMAN ACT BENEFIT THE FAMILIES OF THOSE STRUGGLING WITH SUBSTANCE ABUSE?
Studies show that most individuals who abuse drugs or alcohol fail to recognize the impact that abusing these substances can have on their lives, not to mention the lives of their families. The Marchman Act provides these families with some recourse if their loved ones refuse to acknowledge their addiction and seek help. These court-ordered treatments are especially beneficial for the family members of those struggling with any of the following substances:
WHAT DOES OBTAINING A COURT-ORDERED ADDICTION RECOVERY ENTAIL?
The Marchman Act is a relatively new and complex law; therefore, family members seeking court-ordered addiction recovery for their loved ones are encouraged to consult with a Marchman Act attorney before taking action. That said, court-ordered assessments, stabilization, and addiction recovery treatments will only be approved if a family member can demonstrate that their loved one has a severe substance abuse problem that either endangers their life or the lives of others. And this must be confirmed by a licensed addiction professional per Florida Statue 397. The criteria that must be met for court-ordered addiction recovery include
- An inability to stop using
- Engaging in self-harming behaviors
- Has harmed others
- Impaired judgment
- Refuses to seek treatment
If an addiction professional determines that court-ordered addiction recovery is necessary, the next step in the process will involve the addiction professional, along with the family of the individual struggling with substance abuse, petitioning the court for long-term addiction recovery, which will typically last for 90 days or more.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO BE ADMITTED INTO A REHAB FACILITY AFTER COURT-ORDERED ADDICTION RECOVERY IS GRANTED?
It is important to note that long-term addiction recovery does not necessarily have to take place in a residential treatment facility. In some cases, the court may order outpatient treatments; however, they will most likely have to include some form of addiction counseling. That aside, if an individual is ordered to undergo addiction recovery treatments at any of the 67 counties in Florida, there will usually be a 10-day waiting period following their assessment. However, the waiting time can be as little as 3 days in emergency situations.
DOES THE MARCHMAN ACT ALSO APPLY TO THOSE WITH CO-OCCURING DISORDERS?
Along with stand-alone substance abuse problems, the Marchman Act also extends to those who may be struggling with a co-occurring disorder, a condition whereby an individual is suffering from a mental illness and a comorbid substance abuse problem. Some of the more common mental illnesses associated with co-occurring disorders with substance abuse include the following:
- Depression with cocaine use
- Poly-drug use with schizophrenia
- An alcohol use disorder with a panic disorder
- Borderline personality disorder and poly-drug abuse
Although there are several mental illnesses associated with co-occurring disorders, those detailed in this article represent the ones that are commonly reported by most addiction recovery facilities throughout the state of Florida.
WHO PAYS FOR COURT-ORDERED ADDICTION RECOVERY SERVICES?
As far as paying for court-ordered addiction recovery treatments, the individual struggling with addiction or their family will be responsible for those treatment costs. Fortunately, like voluntary addiction recovery, a portion of these costs can be covered by private health insurance. For those who do not have private health insurance or the financial means to pay for these treatments, the state of Florida has a myriad of state-funded facilities that will accept payments on a sliding scale as well as Medicaid.
WHAT HAPPENS IF AN INDIVIDUAL FAILS TO COMPLETE COURT-ORDERED ADDICTION RECOVERY TREATMENTS?
If an individual fails to complete court-ordered addiction recovery treatments, they will face serious legal consequences, such as being held in contempt of court and possible jail time. The same also applies if the individual fails to remain sober during these treatments as well.
Although the Marchman Act may seem draconian, the law is designed to help those who fail to realize the impact that addiction is having on their lives. And for the families of those struggling with addiction, this new law is a godsend. To learn more about the Marchman Act or to find a rehab facility in your area, consider speaking with one of our friendly associates today at 844-639-8371.