Were you recently handed a sentence to an involuntary rehab program? Are you wondering how to get court-ordered rehab? Maybe you are waiting on a court date and trying to see if you qualify for involuntary rehab instead of jail time?
If you’re concerned about receiving court-ordered rehab, or if you’re wanting to find more information about it, reach out to us at 385-327-7418. We’d be happy to help you through this stressful time.
Why Involuntary Rehab?
Addiction causes many bad choices. Sometimes, it takes a life-altering event to get sober.
Rehabilitation programs are important for every addict who needs to get clean. When battling drug or alcohol addiction, you can use a rehab program to better understand your situation and the deeper reasons behind your substance abuse problem.
Court-ordered rehab is a double-edged sword. Sometimes receiving this sentence can be a blessing of sorts. People may appreciate the opportunity to get clean. Perhaps they have been struggling for quite a while. They wanted to get clean but were too overwhelmed to put the proper energy into finding treatment.
Sometimes concern about the cost is what held them back. Sometimes it is the fear of what life looks like without drugs. The fear of the unknown can be debilitating. Regardless, they are ready for a change.
They are ready to put in the work and create a new, clean life. They are ready to see what the future holds for their drug-free self. It was easier to just keep using—until now.
On the other hand, there are plenty of people who do not want to get clean or do not think they have a problem.
Maybe they were caught with a small amount of weed during a routine traffic stop? They took court-ordered rehab over jail time. Their plan is to just talk the talk, get through the program, and move on with the life they have always known.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, “Most studies suggest that outcomes for those who are legally pressured to enter treatment are as good as or better than outcomes for those who entered treatment without legal pressure.” Either of the types of people mentioned above can end up much better off thanks to involuntary rehab, even if they didn’t like the idea at first.
Getting Court-Ordered Rehab
If you’re facing charges for possession of drugs, wondering how to get court-ordered rehab is only natural.
Hopefully, you know this is not the ideal way to go about getting into a rehab program.
The ideal way to get treatment is through the normal channels of contacting a healthcare provider. This could be your primary care physician or a therapist, or it could mean contacting our treatment professionals. Any of these options can help you without going through the legal system.
If you are facing a court appearance after committing a nonviolent crime while intoxicated, the judge will look over your case. If the court finds you guilty, the judge may offer a court-ordered rehab option.
It is also possible a judge might use a therapy program or counseling service rather than a jail sentence for any criminal who is a first-time offender. Or, if the person is directly connected with possessing or distributing drugs, they may receive a sentence to rehab as a chance to exit that world before it is too late.
When a judge feels a long-term program will make a better impact on your life, they will offer court-ordered rehab. Since the other choice is usually jail time, most people take the rehab.
Remember, once you accept court-ordered rehab, you must follow all rules and program requirements.
A rehab program could interfere with your work schedule or other important life events for several months. Because of this, it is important to weigh your options before accepting them.
How Long is Court-Ordered Rehab?
Depending on the program, your time in rehab can vary from a few days to a few months. The length of your stay depends on many things. The court order could dictate it, or the staff at the treatment facility. Many times, they decide the length based on your progress in the program.
In the early phases of treatment, rehab will focus on stopping the use of drugs or alcohol and beginning the process of change.
Towards the end of treatment, the program will address other problems related to drug use and help you learn how to self-manage your addiction.
If you have a more severe problem or multiple problems, it could take longer to complete an involuntary rehab program.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse associates better outcomes with “treatment that lasts longer than 90 days, with treatment completers achieving the greatest reductions in drug abuse and criminal behavior.”
What to Expect in Rehab
When someone thinks of court-ordered rehab, they may imagine a dull room with uncomfortable folding chairs and bad coffee. Thoughts of moral reform and intense, scolding therapists often come to mind.
This is not always the case though.
Sure, these facilities are nothing like a hotel. They are often plain and can remind people of a hospital.
However, they try to offer some comforts. The ability to take part in activities with others is one of the most important. Socialization is often a major part of rehab in general.
More importantly, the people who run these programs genuinely care about helping you. It is why they do this job. They want to help people who are struggling and need a helping hand for a better future. This job is about more than a paycheck for most counselors.
What are the Common Reasons for Court-Ordered Rehab?
DUI: If you receive a DUI, part of your sentencing may include court-mandated rehab. Many times, your license will be suspended until you complete the program.
Drug possession: If you are caught with a small amount of drugs—and it is your first offense—it is possible you will receive court-ordered rehab.
Child Custody: There are times when a parent must complete a court-ordered rehab program to get custody or visitation rights with their child.
Employer mandate: If they have caught you using at work—or you failed a drug test—it is possible your employer will require you to complete an addiction treatment program before returning to work.
As to who pays for court-ordered rehab, the patient will be responsible for costs, but treatment centers accept insurance and many even offer payment plans. Involuntary rehab is still clearly better than losing your child, your job, or your freedom.
Risks of Violating Court-Ordered Rehab
Violating a court order of any kind can result in serious consequences.
Most violations occur when a person refuses to enroll or stops attending before the required amount of time is up.
It is possible to violate the court order by skipping one or more days of treatment or avoiding a certain part of the treatment plan.
But you will also get into further trouble if you relapse several times. If you are found in possession of drugs or selling drugs during treatment, consequences can be especially severe as this will open the door to further criminal charges.
Any lack of involvement can open the door for a violation.
Even if your violation is a one-time occurrence, you are still accountable. If you feel your treatment is ineffective, it is important you talk with someone at your facility.
Do not stop attending unless you receive formal permission to do so.
The court will monitor your attendance and cooperation in the program. Penalties for violations depend on different factors including the frequency of problems, your past legal history, length of time in treatment, and your overall behavior in the program.
If there are multiple violations, you are at risk for greater consequences. The judge may fine you, increase your time in rehab, or transfer you to jail.
It is possible the judge will understand a one-time occurrence of a minor offense, such a schedule conflict. They may offer sympathy and an alternative option to satisfy your sentence.
However, this is never a guarantee.
If you have a concern about a violation or have broken a program guideline, speak with your lawyer. Your lawyer will discuss any legal consequences or options available to you during this time.
Types of Programs
There are many options for court-ordered treatment. These options will vary depending on many factors including where you live, the offense, or recommendations from specialists.
The court can order inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment, or both.
Inpatient programs are used for more serious addictions. Attending an inpatient treatment program will require you to stay on property 24 hours a day for the duration dictated by the judge or treatment facility. While they can disrupt your normal day-to-day life, inpatient programs have a higher success rate.
Outpatient programs allow you to live at home and go to rehab during the day. They are more affordable and allow for a feeling of normalcy as they are completed. However, the success rate does tend to be lower.
How much is this going to cost?
There is no simple answer to this question.
A local government program may cover the cost of court-ordered rehab if there is a program in your area.
For those with health insurance, it is possible your plan will cover the treatment. You would have to call and ask them.
It is also possible you will have to pay out of pocket.
Keep in mind, most treatment facilities are aware of the financial difficulties facing addicts. It is possible they can provide you a payment plan or get you in touch with local resources to help pay for the program.
We Can Help
Sometimes being forced into doing something is the last thing we want. It is natural to feel annoyed when someone is coercing you, even if they are legally allowed to.
However, it is important to know that court-ordered rehab has been a blessing to countless people. There are too many benefits to list here.
It gives many people the chance to start their lives over. Many addicts rebuild broken relationships with family and friends. They get help with creating a life they want to live.
Getting clean also leaves you with more money in your pocket for fresh adventures or hobbies.
Regardless of the path you choose—even if it is chosen for you—follow the court and seek legal help. Receiving treatment for drug or alcohol abuse will allow you to return to normal life as soon as possible.
You can have quality time with your children, the independence provided by an active driver’s license, and the ability to keep a job without worrying about passing the next drug test.
Regardless of your circumstances, getting the treatment you need will put you on the path to living a productive and healthy life through the choice that you make to attend treatment now.
If you think you need help, or have questions about involuntary rehab programs, give us a call today at the number below.
Written by Krystina Wagner
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