Apply for treatment for someone else

It’s free to apply to the court for compulsory addiction treatment for someone else.

Who can apply for compulsory addiction treatment for someone else

Usually a family member will apply to the Family Court to detain and treat an alcoholic or drug addict. However, applications can also be made by a police officer or anyone else who would have good reason to make an application.

Before you apply

You need to make sure a place is available for your family member in a treatment facility because a judge can only make an Order if a place is available. The manager of the treatment facility must also agree to treat the person.

Forms you’ll need

You’ll need to make an application for an Order for Detention and Treatment. Your application should explain in detail what’s happened recently and why this led you to apply. (If you’re not a relative, your application needs to state the reason why it's being made by you instead of by a relative.)

Fill in this form and give it to your local court:

Application by relative or other reputable person for committal order [DOCX, 14 KB]

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How your family member can respond

When you apply, the judge may ask your family member to show the court why they don’t need to be detained for treatment.

To do this, the judge issues a summons to your family member. This means your family member has to appear in court.

When you make your application, you should also say whether the person is likely to come to court if summoned. This will help the judge decide whether a warrant to arrest the person is needed. The judge can issue a warrant if they believe this is the best way to get the person to court.

Two doctors will need to give evidence that the person is an alcoholic or drug addict within the meaning of the Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Act. A judge can order a medical examination if the person refuses one. The application and evidence must satisfy the judge that detention and treatment are in the best interests of the addict or their family.

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