What is a Marchman Act?
A Marchman Act is a means of providing an individual in need of substance abuse services with emergency services and temporary detention for substance abuse evaluation and treatment when required, either on a voluntary or involuntary basis.
How are voluntary and involuntary Marchman Act admissions different?
A voluntary admission is when a person who wishes to enter treatment for substance abuse applies to a service provider for voluntary admission.
An involuntary admission is when there is good faith reason to believe the person is substance abuse impaired and, because of such impairment, has lost the power of self control with respect to substance use; and either has inflicted, attempted or threatened to inflict, or unless admitted, is likely to inflict physical harm on himself/herself or another; or the person’s judgment has been so impaired because of substance abuse that he/she is incapable of appreciating the need for substance abuse services and of making a rational decision in regard to substance abuse services.
Are there other criteria to know if a Marchman Act is appropriate?
Yes. There is an additional criterion for a voluntary and involuntary Marchman Act that is not included here. For example, a minor may seek voluntary admission for substance abuse services without parental or guardian consent.
A law enforcement officer may take a person into protective custody when the minor or adult appears to meet admission criteria and is brought to the attention of law enforcement or is in a public place.
Who can file an Involuntary Marchman Act Petition?
In addition to a law enforcement officer’s authority to implement protective custody measures in emergency involuntary situations, a private practitioner, the person’s spouse or guardian, any relative of the person, the director of a licensed service provider or the director’s designee, or any three (3) responsible adults who have personal knowledge of the person’s substance abuse impairment or, in the case of a minor, the minor’s parent, legal guardian, legal custodian or licensed service provider can file an Involuntary Marchman Act Petition.
How do I file an Involuntary Marchman Act Petition?
If you have personal knowledge of the person’s substance abuse impairment and believe that because of the impairment the person has lost the power of self control with respect to substance abuse and you have reason to believe that the person has inflicted or is likely to inflict harm on himself, herself or others unless admitted or; the person is incapable of appreciating the need for care because of the substance abuse, you may file a Marchman Act Petition.
You will need to contact a service provider and confirm that a bed is available should the court find it necessary to enter an order authorizing the involuntary assessment and stabilization of the person.
Where do I file a Marchman Act Petition?
A Marchman Act Petition may be filed during normal business hours at your County Clerk’s Office.
What do I need to bring with me?
You will need to bring some form of identification (including social security number and date of birth) and an address or location where the person can be located by the sheriff’s office.
What will happen after I file a Marchman Act Petition?
After you complete the Marchman Act Petition, the court will review the petition and if the person is represented by an attorney, conduct a hearing within 10 days; or, without the appointment of an attorney and relying solely on the contents of the petition, enter an order authorizing the involuntary stabilization and assessment of the person.
How long can a person be held on a Marchman Act?
A person may be detained for involuntary assessment and stabilization for a period not to exceed 5 days.
Who can I call for more information?
For more information please call 877-711-4673