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Can I file a Marchman Act and Guardianship in the same case?

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Hello, everyone. It is Mark, and welcome back.

In this video, I want to talk to you about filing a Marchman Act and Guardianship in the same case. When it comes to helping people with substance use and mental illness, often, it’s necessary to do a Marchman Act and Guardianship.

The Marchman Act is for somebody who has a primary substance use disorder. We don’t use it when there’s no substance use or when we can’t prove substance use. Then, we’re going to look to do a Guardianship.

In an instance where we have a young adult with substance use and mental illness, they certainly qualify or meet the criteria for a Marchman Act, but the family wants much broader control. Perhaps, they want to limit their ability to travel. They want access to medical records. They want to control finances. So, Guardianship is a very useful tool for that.

Why would we use a Marchman Act when a Guardianship can do the job? Well, the Marchman Act is, I think as I compared in one of my other videos, it’s like a sports car. The Guardianship is like a pickup truck. They both get you somewhere, but both have different methods and very different outcomes. In terms of the process, the Marchman Act, which we can file on an emergency basis if somebody is in crisis. It means I can get a court order without them knowing and have the police and a private investigator come over and pick them up. That can normally be done depending on the county, normally within the same day. That’s pretty quick. Here in Palm Beach County, we’ve had orders granted within a couple of hours, and you know if the case is filed at nine, the person’s already been picked up by noon or one o’clock.

With the Guardianship, even if we’re filing for what’s known as an ETG, Emergency Temporary Guardianship. That’s going to require a hearing. As good as we are, as a terrific lawyer as my partner’s order is, it usually takes between 24 to 72 hours to get in the court. Sometimes, we can’t wait for that long. It’s just not fast enough, so if we have criteria for a part one Marchman Act to pick up the order, we will file part one, and then we’ll move ahead with the guardianship process.

There are times when families want the full Marchman Act and the full Guardianship. They want the maximum amount of control. They want the maximum amount of enforceability and hammers hanging over their loved ones’ heads. This is to make sure they stay in treatment long enough to be rid of these horrible diseases, and this curse has basically ruined their lives and ruined the lives of the families dealing with this. It’s not unusual for us to do a full Matchman Act and a full Guardianship. It’s a really terrific tool when used together, for they are very powerful. We encourage you to do it.

I hope that helps, and if you have any questions about Marchman Act and Guardianship, feel free to reach out to us. With that said, see you in the next video.

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