Can a Baker Act Order be extended?
Hello, everyone! It’s Mark, and welcome back. In this video, I want to talk to you about the extension of the Baker Act.
You’ve heard me talk about the 72-hour hold period for assessment and stabilization in other videos. I also have talked about the fact that you can, in theory, be held in a state mental health facility for up to six months. So the question that was posed to me was, after six months, doesn’t the person get out? The simple answer is no.
The facility, an agent of the state, is authorized to petition the court for a second time to commit you involuntarily. What does that mean? It means that if you continue to meet the Baker Act criteria, the facility can ask a judge to extend the period of time in which you are placed in that facility.
When families call me and say, “Look, my loved one has been illegally and unlawfully baker-acted.” I am telling you, it’s a race to the courthouse. You need to get there first, because if the state and the doctors within the facility are making allegations against you, which aren’t true or are unsupported by evidence, or you’ve been deprived of your right to present your own expert, then yes, you can end up stuck in a mental health facility that’s owned and operated by the state for many months. Suppose you’re having an issue with the Baker Act and your loved one has been unlawfully or illegally Baker Acted. In that case, you need to take that seriously because they will keep you if they think that you meet the criteria, even if you disagree with that.
If somebody has made an allegation against you that simply isn’t true, or there’s an opportunity to fight the Baker Act, whether or not we are challenging the state’s experts or hiring our expert, give us a call. The phone is answered 24/7, and we’re here to help you.
With that said, thanks for tuning in. See you in the next video.