Access Excellence NEW!
Interactive module about
Stereotype Threat

Content on this page requires a newer version of Adobe Flash Player.

Get Adobe Flash player

Health Educator Survey
Advertising on AE

How To Get Someone Court Ordered Drug Treatment


Addictions to almost any types of narcotics can affect a person in some way – and although this isn’t often pleasant for the user, it can generally be worse for their friends and family. Watching a loved one suffer from abusing a substance that could potentially kill them is something that no one should have to go through.
This can often be made worse when the addict doesn’t think that they have a problem, and won’t get the professional help that they need to take control of their life. However, that doesn’t mean that there is no hope; there is a way to force a person to go a rehabilitation center to get the necessary treatment – court-ordered rehab.
Although it may not always be a simple task to demand a loved one to go to a treatment facility though court, it may be the only option they have to help them overcome their dependency and change their life. The addict is likely to feel negative about the situation at first, but after receiving the help and care that they need to battle their problem, it’s likely that they’ll be thankful to their loved one for pushing them to do the right thing.

How to get court-ordered rehab

Not only is getting court-ordered rehab often a difficult process, but most find that sending someone they care about to court to impose treatment isn’t any easier.
The simplest way to do this is to approach the necessary legal authorities as soon as a court date is set and propose that the addict in question needs medical intervention. If they agree that treatment is the best option, the next step is to be present when they are appearing in front of a judge. Put forward the case that instead of the usual punishment for their offences, the user should be given addiction treatment instead. The judge will then have the ability to order rehab through a court judgment that will need to be legally enforced.  
For those who would rather not do this, there is another option; involuntary rehab. Generally, the addict will need to go through an investigation and be examined by medical experts to determine whether not they qualify for emergency treatment. In most cases, they will be evaluated by addiction specialists, mental and physical health experts, and a police officer. To get an emergency order through a court, the abuser must:

  • Have little control over their actions
  • Abuse a narcotic substance daily
  • Have mental or physical health issues that are caused by their dependency
  • Be a danger to themselves, their family, or the community

Most States will have varying requirements, so it can often be good idea for an individual to get in touch with local authorities before doing this.
Usually, a person will need to submit a form to a judge explaining why the addict needs help, go through a hearing in court through the standard process to argue the case – and only the judges and other authorities are allowed to make this decision. Even though the addict will also have their say, those deciding are likely to have gone through this many times before, and won’t be easily fooled.

How court-ordered rehab can help

Rehabilitation can often be one of the best ways to help a person to overcome their addiction. According to this article from Wikipedia, drug rehab is ‘the processes of medical or psychotherapeutic treatment’ for a wide range of addictions; from alcoholism to illicit drug abuse. However, forcing someone to receive treatment via a court isn’t usually the same as when a person willingly goes to rehab.
One thing that most individuals worry about is the treatment that their loved one will receive. How effective will it be? Is it worth the hassle of taking them to court? However, no matter how amazing the facility is, it often depends on the patient’s willingness to overcome their problem and become sober. But what if they don’t want treatment, or don’t believe that they have an issue?
In most cases, being sent to court is enough to shock a person into realizing that their problem is more severe than they thought; and generally, being ordered to go through treatment is enough to help an addict to see that they need to change.
When put in a position like this, most understand the importance of their current situation, and will want to overcome their addiction. Although it isn’t a guarantee that they will leave the rehabilitation center cured, there’s certainly a higher chance that they will defeat their addiction if they are willing to admit that they have a problem. In general, it is those who try that succeed – and the treatment helps them along the way.

There is a lot of information regarding the pros and cons of court-ordered treatment, and a quick search should help you to make a decision before you begin the process.

Facts on court-ordered rehab

Although an addict’s motivation is often the key to success, treatment is often a vital part of the recovery process. Court-ordered treatment can often help a person to understand their problem, so that they can change; and then offer them the treatment and care that they need to say goodbye to their days of abusing narcotics.
A few things an individual should look out for in a rehabilitation facility are:

Flexible treatment
Although some individuals may think that a stricter rehab program will be more effective, many users find that flexible treatment can be more rewarding. Each patient and their addiction is unique, and because of this certain types of methods may or may not be as effective as others. Flexible treatment can allow patients to create a program that consists of the care that they find most effective – and make them feel like they have a say in what they do.

Treatment time
With most court-ordered treatment programs, an addict will need a few months to fully understand and accept their problem. Most will also need a longer time to go through treatment and detox. In addition, most will also need a few months in an aftercare program to help them to stay on the right path. In general, a good treatment plan will last from 3 to 9 months.

Monitoring their progress
It’s often important for an addict’s progress to be evaluated, but with court-ordered treatment this usually has to be done daily; as it can often help healthcare experts to see how they are progressing, and make any changes to the treatment program that they feel will help the patient even more.

The treatment’s structure
Although most rehabilitation facilities vary in a number of ways, court-ordered treatment often goes best with a more structured treatment method. However, this doesn’t usually mean that they cannot be flexible; just that the treatment needs to be more intense.

In general, an addict should feel comfortable and relaxed whilst going though treatment – and negative feelings aren’t likely to help them to recover. This is why, when forcing a loved one to get the treatment they need, it can be important for an individual to try and help the abuser to understand that they care and only want the best for them.

Having all of the necessary information to hand before you attempt to enforce a court order can help to ease both yours and their minds, so be sure to undertake plenty of research.

Finishing the treatment program

If an individual is sent to rehab through a court, they will be legally obliged to finish the treatment program. This is because rehab replaces the fines or jail time that the user would have faced otherwise.

The processes involved can often depend on the model that the court is using, which will often be determined by the addict’s previous crimes.
With deferred prosecution programs (which are typically used when a person has no or few legal problems) the addict will not have to plead guilty; and if they finish the program, there are likely to be no more charges. In these cases, the original crime may be omitted form their criminal records.

On the other hand, post-adjudication programs will require the offender to plead guilty to the crimes(s) that they have committed, to show that they understand the severity of their situation. They will be likely to receive a sentence and a fine, but these will be negated should the necessary court ordered rehab program be completed. The crime(s) may also be omitted in these circumstances, even if an addict has a previous record of arrest. In many cases, the user will understand that their behavior has consequences, and that their ability to successfully complete their treatment will be rewarded/punished accordingly.

In cases where post-adjudication models are in force, an addict will be taken back in front of the judge should they fail to complete their arranged treatment. Here, a judge will re-evaluate their previous ruling, and the offender will face either the originally intended sentence (at the very minimum), or a more severe penalty to reflect the judges disappointment in their failure to keep to their previous order. A plea can be changed from guilty to not guilty at this point, but this is not generally advised (especially as a judge isn’t likely to look kindly on their failure and possible continued use of narcotics).

Find out more

Court-ordered treatment can be tough for the addict and their loved ones – and although it’s the right thing to do, it may not seem like the best option. However, for some it can be the only chance to make the necessary changes for a healthier, cleaner lifestyle. This route is for those who are desperate to help a person that they care about, regardless of the initially difficult circumstances.
To find out more about court-ordered rehab, get in touch with our friendly team. We have been through this process many times and understand just how hard it can be to undertake such drastic measures – and this is the reason why we would be glad to help in any way we can.


For More Top Rated Rehabs


Custom Search
on the AE Site



  - NHM Home
  - The Museum
  - Initiatives
  - Campaigns
  - Root Fin Center

  - About AE @ NHM
  - Awards
  - Questions


  - Copyright Info
  - Privacy


National Health Museum About AE Terms of Use Privacy Policy Contact Us Email This Link Search

All rights reserved. Copyright © Access Excellence @ The National Health Museum,
171 17th Street NW, Suite 1200, Atlanta, GA 30363-1032
Email: contact us by email

Updated: Aug 23, 2018