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Can family members get a court order to force a 26 drug addict into rehab?

Altoona, PA |

17 days ago, my cousin Brandon overdosed while smoking the gel inside fetanayl patches, and again tonight. He told the counselor at the Emergency Room, he was trying to kill himself. They are putting him in a psych ward for some therapy, then hopefully into rehab..If he fights it, is there any way to get a court order. Cause if he isn't forced into help, he's going to end up dead.

Attorney Answers 2


  1. I don't know that a person can be forced into rehab due to that old adage that you can't help someone who does not want help. A family member can request involuntary commitment under the Mental Health Procedures Act for a period of time. He may be able to detox and get the mental health treatment he needs.

    My response to this question is intended for informational purposes only and should not be interpreted as legal advice. Please be aware that in answering this question, I do not intend to create a privileged or attorney-client relationship. Further, I can make no guarantee as to the accuracy of said answer due to variables that may not be apparent from the phrasing of the question. Every case is unique and this should not be a substitute for seeking personal legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction.


  2. It is axiomatic that "it would take the patient's cooperation, input, and desire to change for any therapy to work." Having said that, your situation seems to require initiating a 302 Civil Commitment that the addict is a danger to himself or others. Since he is not a minor, this would seem to be your only option if he does not consent to voluntarily entering into a rehab program.

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