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Juan Fernandez-Barquin, ESQ.
Clerk of the Court and Comptroller
Miami-Dade County

Mental Health Court

If you believe a loved one needs help, the Mental Health Court can help you file a  Baker Act . It also assists in Guardianship and Marchman Acts (Substance Abuse).

Baker Act

The Baker Act allows for a person to be picked up and transported to a crisis stabilization unit for an involuntary psychiatric examination. It is based on the behavioral criteria that the person may be harmful to himself or others. If the person meets this criteria, the judge signs the emergency admission order prepared by the Clerk's Office.

Certified copies of the order are given to the petitioner with instructions to give them to the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction in their area. This gives the agency the authority to take the individual to a receiving facility to be evaluated.

Fill out the  Baker Act Ex Parte Petition  prior to going to the Clerk's Mental Health Office.

Petition the court

To petition the court for an involuntary psychiatric examination order, the petitioner must have observed the behavior of the person. You must know the address, date of birth, age, height and weight of the person who needs the examination.

The person must be in Miami-Dade County and not in a hospital or jail. To allow time for processing, you must be at the  Probate Court Office  prior to 3:30 p.m.

A valid photo identification with your signature on it, such as a driver license, passport, resident alien card or Florida identification card is required. There is no filing fee for this petition.

Requesting police transport

The order will be given to the petitioner in a sealed envelope. The petitioner must contact the police, and they will transport the person to the nearest crisis stabilization unit or prearranged private facility.

Alcohol/Drug Abuse Treatment - Marchman Act

If you are seeking involuntary treatment for a person with alcohol or drug abuse problems, you can visit: 
For information on filing a Marchman Act Petition please visit : Marchman Act (


For information on guardianship, you may visit the Eleventh Judicial Circuit of Florida on Guardianship or visit the Office of Public & Professional Guardians
You may also visit the Statewide Public Guardianship Office for more information. 

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