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What are the rules for the Baker Act in Florida?

by | May 18, 2020

Ask CCHR Series

For a person to be taken into custody under a Baker Act three criteria (rules) must be met:

  1. There is reason to believe that the person is mentally ill.
  2. Because of his or her mental illness the person has refused voluntary examination or is unable to determine whether examination is necessary; and
  3. Without care or treatment, the person is likely to suffer from neglect resulting in real and present threat of substantial harm that can’t be avoided through the help of others; or there is substantial likelihood that without care or treatment the person will cause serious bodily harm to self or others in the near future, as evidenced by recent behavior.

All three rules must be met for a person to be Baker Acted.

For more information on the Baker Act click here.


  1. Kathleen Humphrey

    What if it’s alcoholism? The person WILL NOT seek treatment and is out of control.

    • CCHR Florida

      The Marchman Act exists for individuals who are in need of involuntary substance abuse treatment. You may learn more at this link:

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