Many people suffering from drug or alcohol addiction refuse to seek treatment because they find it difficult to accept their condition, and they fear the idea of going into rehab. Thus, persuading them from going is a tough task. But is it possible to force them into rehab? Yes, it is possible depending on the state the person lives. So, can you force someone into rehab in Florida?

The act of involuntarily committing someone to rehab means stripping away their freedom to decide for themselves. That’s why some states have established legislation allowing for the involuntary commitment of substance abusers, while others have not. Read on to know about Florida’s rehab procedures.

Can You Force Someone Into Rehab In Florida
Can You Force Someone Into Rehab In Florida

The Florida Marchman Act

Several jurisdictions have approved laws allowing substance abusers to be involuntarily committed. If this is the case, can you force someone into rehab in Florida? The answer is yes, and it’s because of the Florida Marchman Act.

The Marchman Act, commonly known as Florida’s Substance Abuse Impairment Act, is a Florida statute made to help people receive treatment. This law allows a person to be forced into a substance abuse evaluation and treatment against their will. This law also allows family members to petition the court without the person’s agreement for a court-ordered addiction assessment. This is only used when a person needs medical attention and declines to go voluntarily.

Everything You Need To Know About The Marchman Act
Everything You Need To Know About The Marchman Act

Everything You Need To Know About The Marchman Act

Now you have known that the answer to the question, can you force someone into rehab in Florida? Here’s everything you need to know on the different criteria for the Marchman Act of Florida.

To start the Marchman Act process, an individual must be proven to have a drug or alcohol problem. While the act only takes effect in Florida, other states have passed laws and mechanisms in place to help people with the therapy they aren’t aware that they require. Here is a list of reasons that qualify an individual to be forced into rehab.

  • The person’s ability to regulate their drug or alcohol abuse has been compromised.
  • The person has caused, threatened to cause, or sought to cause physical injury to another person.
  • The person’s reasoning is impaired as a result of their substance usage. Thus, needed a substance abuse service.

Aside from these criteria, here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the Marchman Act.

  • Can anyone use the Marchman Act?

You have to be the wife or husband, guardian, or relative of the person who needs rehab to use the Marchman Act. However, if three people who are not connected to the individual have firsthand knowledge of their substance misuse, they can apply for this involuntary commitment. Because some people do not have family or have regular contact with their loved ones, the Marchman Act allows three unrelated adults to appeal for a friend or colleague who is in need.

  • Is it required to be a resident of Florida? 

Although the Marchman Act is limited to the state of Florida, a person doesn’t have to be a permanent resident of the state to be forced to seek addiction treatment. As long they are in the state, they can be involuntarily committed to a rehab facility and be treated against their will.

  • Does it need legal guidance? 

Getting an attorney is not required when employing the Marchman Act. However, having the backing and assistance of an experienced expert will boost your likelihood of success when attempting to compel someone to attend rehab. Regrettably, families frequently struggle to invoke the Marchman Act caused by a lack of awareness of civil systems and practices. If the cost of hiring an attorney is an issue, you may seek help from f a court-appointed attorney.

There are times when cases are dropped, indicating insufficient evidence to fulfill the Marchman Act. If this occurs, you can always stage interventions to persuade a person to get treatment.

Additional Involuntary Rehabilitation Procedures in the State of Florida

Can you force someone into rehab in Florida? Yes!

Since you have been introduced to what Marchman Act is, the different criteria that have to be met in order to qualify for the involuntary commitment, and the answers to some of the frequently asked questions about the act, let’s now review each involuntary rehab treatment available in Florida so you may better grasp your alternatives if you wish to compel someone into recovery.

The Marchman Act is a process that involves the county clerk’s office filing a petition for Involuntary Assessment and Stabilization. This can make enforcing the Marchman Act a time-consuming and challenging operation. If you have unsuccessfully attempted to use the Marchman Act in Florida, other methods compel a client to enter substance abuse rehab.

  • General Involuntary Admission- The most pragmatic approach of forcing somebody to seek treatment is to use the standard forcible admission procedure. This process determines whether there are grounds to assume the person in issue is disturbed in thinking and has an alcohol or drug addiction.
  • Emergency Admission- A doctor, husband or wife, parent, relative, or any responsible person with knowledge of a person’s substance usage can request an emergency admission to treatment. Certification is necessary to accompany the request for emergency admission. The doctor’s checkup must occur within five days after the application date.
  • Protective Custody-A law enforcement officer will take a person in need of addiction treatment to a hospital, rehabilitation center, government center, detention center during a protective custody procedure. Protective custody methods are not deemed arrests, even if people are shackled and compelled into rehab. If they match the involuntary admission standards, a police officer will place them in custody.
  • Extension of Involuntary Treatment- Health practitioners have ten days to file a request to extend a treatment order before it ends. However, for this to be legitimate, the patient must retain meeting the criteria for involuntary treatment. The judge will appoint a hearing within 15 days of the appeal being presented if an extension is requested. If the review goes successfully, the patient’s treatment may be extended for up to 90 days.


There’s no time to waste if someone you care about is struggling with addiction. So, can you force someone into rehab in Florida? Yes, you can because the state has the Marchman Act that allows involuntarily committing someone under several guidelines. This is a very difficult decision to take, but it can also be the best help you can do for that person. Forcing someone into rehab does not reduce the success rate of an individual as long as they are committed and have the support they need to be sober.

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