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Why do I need a lawyer for my Florida Marchman act case

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Published on May 29, 2018

Robert Gluck: Hello, my name is Robert Gluck. I'm a trial lawyer here in Florida, and I've been practicing since 1989. One of the areas that I handle are known as Marchman Act cases. This is a situation where somebody is in need of detoxification or treatment due to a drug or an alcohol addiction.
People have asked me, "Why do I need to hire a lawyer to file a Marchman Act petition against my loved one, if the clerk's offices throughout Florida, and all the counties provide these forms?" Well, you need a lawyer to help you, because if you have a form and you don't know the procedures, and you don't know the facilities, and you don't know what the best options are for your loved one, you're going to take the Marchman Act, which was designed to be the most powerful tool to help your loved one get the treatment they need, and you're going to waste it by not having it done procedurally the right way.
For example, did you think that if you file a petition against someone and get a court date, that if you have that petition served on your loved one three days before the hearing, do you think they're going to stay for the hearing, or do you think they're going to take off, and they're going to plan what they're going to do? I would suggest to you that what I would do, is I have my process servers that know that that's a risk, and they'll wait until the night before.
I know which drug treatment facilities might be best for your loved one. I know which ones don't work. I know how much they charge. I know what might be the best option for you, especially if you live out of state, and you've got a loved one in Florida that you want to file a petition for.
What I would say to you is, is that it's very important that, if you're out of state, or even if you're within the state, don't think that you could just fill out forms and go in front of a magistrate and everything will be done for you. You've got to line up the detox center. You've got to line up the treatment center. You've got to know how they're going to get there. Are they going to be taken by a sheriff? Are you going to have some interventionist bring them there? What are you going to do to make sure that there's after care? Are you going to be able to file a petition for an extension for an additional 90 days if they need more treatment?
There's a lot of things that need to be done to get these cases done right, because we're not messing around. This is someone's life at stake. You've already tried all of the voluntary methods of getting them recovered. They didn't work, or you wouldn't be watching this video. If you're thinking of about a Marchman Act, you need a lawyer to do it right.

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