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Gregory C. Harrell, Clerk of Court and Comptroller of Marion County, Florida
Marion County Clerk of Court and Comptroller
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Baker Acts

Clerks of Court accept petitions for Baker Act (Chapter 394, Florida Statues) and Marchman Act to protect individuals and families dealing with mental health and substance abuse issues.

Florida’s Baker Act provides individuals with emergency services and temporary hold for up to 72 hours for a mental health examination.

What is the Baker Act?

The Florida Mental Health Act, commonly referred to as the Baker Act, focuses on crisis services for individuals with mental illness, much like an emergency department is for individuals experiencing a medical emergency.

What are the Criteria for a Baker Act?

An individual may be taken to a receiving facility for involuntary examination under the Baker Act if:

  • There is reason to believe he/she has a mental illness, and due to the mental illness, the individual has refused or is unable to determine if an examination is necessary; and either;
  • Without care or treatment, the individual is unlikely to care for themselves, which can result in substantial harm to their well-being, and it is not evident that harm can be avoided through familial intervention or other services; or
  • It is likely, based on recent behavior, that without treatment, the individual will pose a serious threat to themselves or others.
What is the Baker Act? Florida Department of Children and Families