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Can a Person Be Sent to Rehab Against Their Will?

People who struggle with substance use often are not able to see the problem exists. They need professional help to see how hard they are struggling, even though they are unwilling to accept treatment for addiction. Once they are able to get help, they usually feel better and start to thrive. Active addiction means the chances of quitting alone are slim, but with support and help, the chances are higher, even if they are not going completely of their own free will. 

Laws for Rehab

People with addiction in most states must be convicted of a crime in order to be sent to rehab. There are few states that allow family and friends to appeal an order to send a loved one to rehab. Many states have rulings for people actively dangerous to themselves or others. The involuntary commitment may be possible if the person is dangerous or a risk. A few things to note:

  • Baker Act: also known as Casey’s or Kendra’s Law, which allows a judge to order a person to go into mental health treatment if they are a threat to themselves or others
  • Marchman Act: in many states, a spouse, relative, or guardian may file a petition for court-ordered involuntary treatment with a court determining if the person meets the criteria for substance use
  • Length of court-ordered involuntary treatment varies, although most rehab places are not under lockdown

Professional Intervention

There are many ways to help someone you love that may abuse drugs or alcohol. If they are struggling with drug use, it may be helpful to consider hiring an experienced addiction interventionist. Concerned family and friends cannot force a loved one into treatment. A person with an addiction will respond to voluntary treatment better anyways and the likelihood of successful recovery is increased when treatment is accepted, not forced. Seeking out professional services and staging an intervention is the best way to get a person to see his need for treatment.

Treatment for Addiction

When seeking help for loved ones, it is best to look for treatment places that will be representative of the person’s needs. They may need mental health evaluations, so dual diagnosis is always more helpful and better than addiction only places. Treatment must be comprehensive and support a person’s journey of healing. It is important to find space to allow this person to come to terms with their addiction, confront it head-on, and decide they are ready to seek help before trying to force it on them. Let them open up to the idea as it will help recovery stick that much better in the long run.

Guest House provides quality care for clients seeking support for addiction recovery. We teach people how to live a sober life through programs, therapeutic support, and evidence-based therapies. Our recovery program is staffed by people who understand the power of addiction. For more information on sober living programs for men and women as well as recovery programs, call 855-483-7800.