Mental Health cases generally are confidential, and therefore information regarding these cases are not provided on this website or over the phone system. The laws surrounding mental illness are outlined in Florida Statutes 392-395 and Florida Statute 397.
Baker Act/Ex-parte is for anyone who is mentally ill and is unable to understand their need for stabilization and/or treatment. Anyone who has witnessed action of the said individual and feels that he's a threat to himself or someone else may come to our office and complete a sworn affidavit stating the said person's actions.
Marchman Act is for anyone who has a chemical or alcohol addiction. Any one family member or any adult who has direct personal knowledge of the respondent’s substance abuse impairment may file a Petition for Assessment or Treatment of said individual and should come to our office in person to complete the petitions.
Incapacity Proceeding is for anyone who is an adult that became incapacitated after birth. By Florida Law, this procedure requires an attorney.
Suggestion of Capacity (Restoration to Capacity) Proceeding is for anyone who was previously determined to be incapacitated and has recovered their capacity and is currently capable of exercising some or all the rights which were removed. Any interested person, including the ward, may file a suggestion of capacity.
A Developmentally Disabled (Guardian Advocate) Proceeding is for any adult that has a developmental disability from birth. This process can be done with or without an attorney. The guardian appointed on these cases must follow the same rules/requirements that apply to guardians under Florida Statute 744.
In 2018, The Florida Legislature passed the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act in response to a tragic school shooting. The law is designed to enhance public safety by restricting firearm and ammunition possession by a person who poses a danger to himself or herself or others.
What can you do if you believe someone poses a danger to himself or herself or others if he or she has access to firearms or ammunition?
You can contact your local police department or sheriff’s office and provide them with the information you have. They may seek a risk protection order from a court under section 790.401 Florida statutes. You will need to provide law enforcement with information that you know about the person, his or her mental health condition, any threats or acts of violence that were made, any other facts that raise a concern for safety. Law enforcement will need a description of the type of firearm(s) and ammunition in the possession of the person you are concerned about.
The Clerk’s Office is unable to provide legal advice or assistance.
To assist you, below you will find forms and legal resources. For further assistance, please visit the Self Help Equal Access Center - Law Library, where Law Librarians are available to assist you in locating forms and legal resources.
Visit our Law Library located on the first floor of the North Wing of the Courthouse to find:
VALID FORMS OF PAYMENT — Cash, Cashier’s Check, Bank Official Check, Money Order, Attorney Trust Account check, or American Express, Discover, MasterCard, or Visa credit cards. (Proper identification is required when paying in person by credit card.)
NO PERSONAL CHECKS ARE ACCEPTED.
No Fees or Court Costs are associated with the following:
|Petition for Determination of Incapacity
|Petition for Suggestion of Capacity
|Petition for Guardian Advocate Person Only
|Petition for Guardian Advocate Person and Property
Yes. Court records are confidential for public inspection, unless a law or a court order specifically provides that a certain type of record is not confidential. According to Florida law, the clinical records of a patient being treated for mental illness are confidential.
The petition to have a person examined, assessed or treated for mental illness must be based upon the sworn testimony or personal knowledge of the petitioner(s). Therefore, you must appear in person to take an oath.
A court may enter an order requiring a person to be examined if, based on the sworn testimony of others, it appears that the person is mentally ill and because of the mental illness has refused or is unable to submit to a voluntary examination.
If it appears that a person should be involuntarily placed in a facility for treatment, a petition is filed by the administrator of the facility where the person was temporarily located. The administrator's petition must be accompanied by the opinions of two psychiatrists.
According to Florida law, a petition seeking to commit a person for examination, assessment, or treatment of mental illness must be filed in the county where the person is located. It is also necessary for law enforcement to locate the person at the time the court order is filed.
If the person is committed for mental illness, and the person is committed for the purpose of examination, the person must be examined within 72 hours. If the person is committed for treatment, a facility may retain the patient for a period not to exceed 6 months. A person assigned to less restrictive treatment alternatives will usually undergo an average treatment period of about 4 weeks.
No. However, the law requires that an attorney be appointed to represent the interests of the respondent.
|Appointed or retained by another to transact business for him or her.
|Attorney For Petitioner
|An attorney for a person who has filed a petition.
|Also Known As (AKA)
|An alias name.
|Court Appointed Counsel
|An attorney appointed by the Court to represent the respondent, alleged incapacitated person or ward in a case.
|Change of Venue
|Moving a case to another Country, County or State.
|A physical, cognitive, or emotional impairment, often caused by a neurodevelopmental disorder such as cerebral palsy or autism spectrum disorder, that appears early in life and limits a person's ability to learn, communicate, or perform one or more activities of daily life.
|On behalf of only one party, without notice to any other party.
|Judicial officers appointed by the Court to hear testimony and make reports which, when approved by the presiding judge, become the decision of the Court.
|A person appointed by will or by law to assume responsibility for incompetent adults or minor children. Legal right given to a person to be responsible for a person or property of a person deemed incapable of providing these necessities for him/her.
|A writ used as a means to bring a person before the court to determine whether he/she is being detained unlawfully.
|A party who is financially unable to pay filing fees, and other due process costs.
|The place or county where a legal matter arises and must be heard.
|A person who gives evidence in a case.