Disclaimer: Please contact an attorney or your local probate court for assistance with filing petitions under Casey’s Law. This article is for information purposes only.
Sitting by and watching your loved one misuse drugs and alcohol can leave you feeling powerless. Understandably, you want to do something to help your loved one with their substance use disorder. However, unless they are willing to admit they need help, getting them into a treatment program can be difficult. Yet, one viable option that may help is using Casey’s Law in Ohio.
What Is Casey’s Law in Ohio?
Ohio is one of several states that passed legislation for the involuntary placement of an individual into drug and alcohol treatment, referred to as Casey’s Law. This law allows you to petition the court in your respective county to order your loved one to go to rehab or another form of addiction treatment. However, there are specific criteria your loved one must demonstrate before a judge will order them into an addiction treatment program.
When Can Casey’s Law Be Used?
Casey’s Law in Ohio and Kentucky can be used if your loved one meets the following criteria:
- The individual must have an alcohol use or substance use disorder.
- The individual presents a danger to themselves, their family, friends, or others, or there is the perceived threat of danger resulting from their alcohol or substance addiction.
- The individual would benefit from an addiction treatment program.1
If your loved one does not meet the criteria, you cannot use Casey’s Law.
How Do I Use Casey’s Law in Ohio?
Suppose your loved one meets the three requirements to use Casey’s Law in Ohio. Then, your next step is to contact your county probate court and inquire about what you need to do to file a petition for Involuntary Treatment for Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse, informally known as “Casey’s Law”. Some counties provide you with the application, and others may refer you to a lawyer for assistance.
At the court hearing, the judge will review the findings of the medical professionals and review other evidence in order to make a determination. You can have a lawyer present, but it is not necessary. Your loved one does have a right to a lawyer, and the court will appoint one if they cannot afford one.
After the hearing, if the judge finds your loved one satisfies the requirements for Casey’s Law, they will be ordered into rehab. Please keep in mind you are responsible for all financial costs associated with using Casey’s Law, including court fees, your lawyer fees, and the cost of rehab treatment for your loved one. If your loved one has health insurance that may be used to help pay for a treatment program.
Casey’s Law vs. Baker Act
The Baker Act is well-known by many people because they have heard of it in movies and television programs. It was initially passed in Florida in 1971. However, while the criteria for involuntarily committing someone is similar to Casey’s Law, it does not apply to alcohol and substance use disorders. Instead, the Baker Act limits family and friends to request mental health treatment for a loved one who is unwilling or unable to seek help themselves.2 Then in 1993, Florida passed the Marchman Act, which is similar to Casey’s Law and enables people to seek involuntary treatment for their loved ones when they have a chronic alcohol or drug misuse problem.
What Are My Other Options?
Many states have similar laws and acts like Casey’s Law. The best way to determine whether you can have a loved one involuntarily ordered into an addiction treatment program is to contact your county probate court office or consult with a family lawyer in your state. Aside from Casey’s Law or a similar option, there are other approaches you can use to help your loved one realize they need help. For example, you could work with a qualified interventionist and stage an intervention.
Sometimes an intervention is sufficient to encourage your loved one to seek help. An intervention also can help your loved one realize how addiction is impacting those around them. It is essential to remember that the key to long-term recovery is your loved one admitting they have a problem and having a sincere desire to get help. However, when your loved one presents a clear danger to themselves or those around them, using Casey’s Law may be your only option.
Casey’s Law Addiction Treatment in Columbus, OH
Though we are unable to help with filing petitions, if you are able to get your loved one ordered to treatment under Casey’s Law, Ohio Addiction Recovery Center in Columbus is here to help. We offer personalized rehab programs to address your loved one’s specific needs. For further information about our detox program, addiction treatment, interventions, and assistance in getting your loved one into a voluntary treatment program, please feel free to contact us through our online form, instant chat, or call 800-481-8457 to speak with an intake specialist today.