you can force someone into addiction treatment

Can You Force Someone into Treatment in California?

A question that we are commonly asked at Drug Help Line is if a person can be forced into addiction treatment in the state of California. We now know that waiting for a person to hit rock bottom isn’t necessary, and in fact, can be dangerous. But, what if your loved one refuses to get help for their drug or alcohol abuse? Is there a way that you can force them into treatment? It is possible.

California Has Involuntary Commitment Laws

Currently, there are 37 states with involuntary commitment laws. These laws allow the court to order adults addicts into rehab. California is one of these states, which means it is possible to force someone into treatment. However, there are certain requirements the addict must meet, and each state’s guidelines are slightly different. Generally speaking, in order to get a person into treatment in Orange County, CA for a substance use or alcohol use disorder, you’ll need to prove the following:
  • Your loved one has an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol.
  • At times, your relative has threatened harm to themselves or others. 
  • Addiction has severely debilitated your family member. 
To have a strong case, you need to do more than share your side of the story. If you can, obtain hospital or police records that document past incidents. You can also get a court order to show that your loved one cannot provide the basic needs for themselves or their family. The more supporting evidence you have, the better.

Court-Ordered Treatment in Orange County Can be Reversed 

It’s important to understand that addicts facing court-ordered treatment have rights, too. Your loved one could get an attorney and fill out a report of unlawful detention. So, after all of your hard work forcing them into rehab, your loved one could be released. These cases vary on an individual basis, so the best thing you can do is consult with a lawyer before starting the process. While there is no guaranteed outcome, a lawyer can shed light on how successful your case may be. 

Involuntary Treatment Can be Successful

Involuntary treatment in Orange County has similar success rates to voluntary treatment. Even though the person may not want to be there, they are usually motivated to stay clean once they have gone through the detox process. Detoxification and withdrawal are often what hold addicts back from getting help.  Unfortunately, involuntary commitment only works for short-term detox. After this, the court can’t  force your loved one into long-term rehab. This will be up to you and the recovering addict. Drug and alcohol addiction is not something that can be treated in a matter of days or weeks. Your relative will need inpatient or outpatient treatment, 12-step meetings, therapy and lifestyle changes. Detox is just the beginning. If you are concerned about a loved one and want to get them addiction treatment in Orange County, contact Drug Help Line today. We can help, and we are familiar with the laws in our state. Call us today at 800-591-0343.