Can a minor child be Baker Acted and what should I do about it?
Hello, everyone! Welcome to another edition of our video newsletter.
In this video, I want to talk about the Baker Act and minors.
We’ve been getting a lot of calls from families whose minor children, basically younger than 18, and sometimes as young as six years of age, are being baker-acted. This typically comes when something is posted on social media or when a child tells a counselor at school that they’re having issues. The next thing you know, this child is being handcuffed and placed in the back of a patrol car and taken to a Baker Act receiving facility. Then the family calls me and says their child was taken and the school didn’t notify us or even tell us that there was a problem going on. They tried to contact the facility, but no one spoke to them to inform them what was going on.
You need to know that the Baker Act doesn’t allow for involuntary commitment of individuals younger than 18, typically teenagers who are getting baker-acted. What happens is they fall into this black hole. As I’ve said in other videos, time is of the essence with the Baker Act. You have to act as soon as possible because the facility can and will petition the court to keep your child. Also, the Baker Act statute specifically states that the facility is supposed to notify you once they receive your child. They’re supposed to reach out to you and let you know that your child is with them. The parents call me because these are not happening, and sometimes, they don’t even know where their child is. They’re calling me to help them get their child out. Of course, the answer is yes. I can help them. You need to know why the facilities are doing this. They are not complying with the statute and not notifying the parents or legal guardian because no one is watching them. Nobody knows that your child is there beside you and the facility. Sometimes it’s just the facility that knows where your child is.
If you have a minor child, they can be baker-acted. If they tell a school council that they thought about hurting themselves or post something on social media about hurting themselves, they’re going to get baker-acted. You will be dealing with the stress and the anxiety that go with having a child baker-acted. It’s a horrible thing to happen to a child. No child deserves to be handcuffed and placed in the back of a police car and taken to a facility. If your minor child gets baker-acted, please call me. The phone is on 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I can get your child out on the weekend, even when the courts are closed. We’ve had great success getting people out on the weekend, but time is of the essence. You got to move quickly.
Feel free to reach out to me. I don’t charge for a consultation, even on the weekends. Take care. Be safe and be well.