What Is The History Of The Marchman Act?

The state of Florida has been utilizing chapter 396 to address substance abuse for over 30 years...

Prior to October 1, 1993 substance abuse was addressed by chapters 396 and 397. Chapter 396 was primarily concerned with alcoholism while chapter 397, was more concerned with drug dependency. As of October 1st, 1993, the new chapter 397, called the Hal S. Marchman Alcohol and Other Drug Services Act, superseded chapters 396 and 397. Unlike the prior chapters the new chapter 397, dubbed the “Marchman Act”, does not distinguish between drug dependency and alcoholism using the term “substance abuse.” The Marchman Act allows families and friends, through the court system, to compel their loved ones to obtain substance abuse treatment.

Over the years the involuntary court involved admissions portion of the Marchman Act has been minimally modified. However, the intent behind the law remains the same – to compel an addicted individual, meeting Marchman Act criteria, to undergo assessment, stabilization and ultimately obtain necessary services for treatment. The newest changes to the Marchman Act effective July 1st, 2017 are reflected in the site providing you the most current state of the law.

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