Baker Act and Treatment If your significant other has mental health problems, it’s important to seek treatment. Even children can and do face mental health trials and tribulations. However, the Baker Act is not the way to get treatment for adults or children. The Baker Act was designed only for emergencies. When the Baker Act…

It is important to note that Florida law extends the “72-hour clock” if the period allowed for examination ENDS on a weekend or holiday. So if a patient’s “clock” started on, say a Thursday, 72 hours later would be Sunday  So the receiving facility would have until Monday to discharge the patient. Well what if…

Baker Acts and schools I often get calls about children being taken from school because of a Baker Act. In almost every case, the parent(s) were only notified after the Baker Act took place, usually when the child is already at the Baker Act receiving facility. According to current Florida law, a parent or guardian…

Frequent calls are a request to help when a loved one is disabled due to mental illness. Frequently I recommend Guardianship. Guardianship allows a Petitioner to make health care decisions on the behalf of a person. The statute says: “Imminent danger that the physical or mental health or safety of the person will be seriously…

During this Coronavirus, we have all been experiencing more stress than usual and have had many restrictions placed on us. It is challenging to find/see an individual who has been Baker Acted.  There has been limited or no visitation allowed in Baker Act receiving facilties in many parts of Florida.  This presents difficulties for patients’…

“SIGNING VOLUNTARY” An issue when faced with whether to “sign voluntary” arises when deciding if this is the best and fastest route to discharge. Recently, a concerned parent and I discussed this issue. This parent believed that “signing voluntary” and immediately requesting discharge would necessarily result in the child seeing a physician within 24 hours who…

By Kyra Gurney Of the Miami Herald Handcuffs and a psych exam for a 7-year-old? Schools do that too often, parents say. A 7-year-old at Miami’s Coral Way K-8 Center was handcuffed, put in the back of a police car and taken to a hospital for an involuntary psychiatric exam after he hit and kicked a…

Every day someone who lives in Florida or a visitor to Florida is taken for involuntary psychiatric examination. Baker Act initiations occur so the POSSIBILITY of an adverse outcome is avoided. A Baker Act initiation often is only to avoid liability by police officers, or emergency room physicians, or mental health professionals. Many Baker Act…

My firm has a process so a person who should not be held under the Baker Act gets discharged quickly. A person should be released if the criteria for a Baker Act examination are not met. If the person has been living independently, has a support system available, and has had no prior mental health…

During the five-year period between 2011 and 2016, the number of children in Florida who were subjected to A Baker Act rose by almost half. During the same time, Florida’s population rose by only 5.5 percent. Several highly-publicized cases involving young children have increased public consciousness. Florida sets no minimum age at which a child…

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