The involuntary confinement of an individual who is a danger to themselves or others is referred to as a 72-hour or 5150 hold. The threat must present itself because of a mental health condition. These holds provide immediate evaluation and treatment for the individual.
Thousands of people are put on these holds annually, but some are mistakes. The danger with these holds is they can lead to extended detainment and legal consequences. If you or someone you love is under a 5150 hold, it is critical that you speak to a 5150 holds lawyer in Buena Park, CA, from the Simmrin Law Group for answers and options.
5150 Hold Criteria
The basic criteria for a 5150 hold are the endangerment of an individual or others around them. Another instance where a 5150 hold can happen is when the person is gravely disabled by their mental health condition. There are exhaustive definitions for either situation.
When a person is a danger to themselves or others, they have suicidal or homicidal thoughts. Things to consider regarding the individual being dangerous include:
- They threaten to harm themselves
- They threaten to harm someone else
- They have a history of violence
- Signs of psychosis
Being gravely disabled is complex because many people live with disabilities and can care for themselves. People who cannot provide for their basic needs because of their mental health condition are gravely disabled. Examples include:
- Inability to care for oneself
- Failure to maintain living conditions
- Inability to manage medications
Mental health conditions can cause a lapse in judgment that requires additional assistance, but people should consider their options before initiating an involuntary hold on someone else. The trauma of being detained and sent to a facility without choice can further trigger the condition. 5150 holds lawyers understand how delicate these situations are and how important it is for people to have a semblance of control over their life.
The Simmrin Law Group will work to protect your rights and fight for your freedom.
For a free legal consultation with a 5150 holds lawyer serving Buena Park, call (310) 896-2723
The Initiation Process
The parties that can initiate a 5150 hold are loved ones like family, friends, or partners. They will contact law enforcement or speak to medical staff about the hold to begin the process. Then a law enforcement officer or mental health professional will initiate a 5150 hold.
The appropriate parties will assess the situation by asking questions and looking for physical harm and determine if the individual meets the 5150 hold criteria. If the requirements are met, the assessing party will notify the mental health facility, family members, and anyone the patient wants to be involved with.
Next, the patient is transported to the mental health facility for observation, evaluation, and treatment. Transportation is done with an ambulance or in a police vehicle. When someone is transported in a police vehicle, it can result in trauma and worsen the medical condition.
Upon arriving at the facility, paperwork is completed that details the individual’s behavior and reason for the hold. Other relevant information will also be critical for your 5150 holds attorney in Buena Park, CA, case review.
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The 72-Hour Window
Spending 72 hours involuntarily in a psychiatric facility can seem like the longest days of your life. Mental health professionals will evaluate you and make you undergo various tests. They are looking for evidence that you need an extended hospitalization or hold.
Some of the tests performed include:
- Lab test
- Physical exam
- Psychiatric assessments
- Assessment of risk of harming someone or themself
Depending on the results of these tests, the patient will be released from a 5150 hold or will have a detainment extension of 14 days under a 5250 hold. Additionally, individuals will also get therapy, counseling, and medication to address their mental health condition. Treatment is supposed to stabilize the person and alleviate the symptoms that got them into the facility.
It also establishes a follow-up care plan. Of course, people who already manage their mental health condition will have a treatment plan in place.
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Legal Ramifications of a 5150 Hold
Your mental health is not criminal and should have no legal ramifications, but it does. The social ramifications involve disclosing your whereabouts to your boss or facing job loss, telling your landlord you will be late or cannot pay rent, and the stigma that comes with having a mental health condition.
The legal consequences are grim, as your freedom and some of your rights are in jeopardy. During the hold period, you cannot willingly leave the facility. When a 5150 hold results in an involuntary 5250 hold, that can lead to your rights being stripped away.
When you have multiple involuntary holds within a year, the state can revoke your right to own or receive a firearm for five years. You can also face a lifelong ban on gun ownership on a federal level.
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How a 5150 Holds Lawyer Can Help
5150 holds attorneys will have many responsibilities when it comes to handling your case. Their primary responsibility is to offer legal advice on your rights and options when under any psychiatric hold. We can also explain the legal process and represent you during an appeal.
We will gather evidence and assess your care for any mistreatment or violations during our representation. Mediators are essential because many people in the facility do not have access to speak to their loved ones.
As a mediator, we can facilitate communication between the patient, loved ones, and the professionals in the facility. The goal is to reach an amicable resolution.
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Your mental health is essential, and treatment is vital to managing it. However, you should not be forcefully put into a facility when you do not need it. You need a Buena Park 5150 holds attorney to assess your circumstances and work to ensure you get adequate care and do not suffer severe consequences for it.
You need a 5150 holds lawyer who understands applicable mental health regulations and laws. You want top-notch legal representation and advocacy. Staff can lift these holds at any point, but they can also extend them.
The Simmrin Law Group will work towards your prompt release. Give us a call for a consultation.
Call or text (310) 896-2723 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form