A sentence for court-ordered drug and alcohol rehab may be imposed due to drug-related crime. One of the most common is a driving under the influence (DUI) or a driving while intoxicated (DWI) charge. In some cases, court-ordered treatment may take the place of a jail sentence.

Court-ordered rehab could be an opportunity for a person to regain sobriety and control over their life. Court-ordered addiction treatment services not only grant a person an opportunity for sobriety, but in many cases these programs focus on helping a person to function better socially, both within the home and community.

By building positive behaviors and sober living skills, court-ordered treatment can help a person become confident and empowered to lead a more balanced life free from addiction.

Court-Ordered Drug And Alcohol Addiction Treatment In Place Of Jail Time

Instead of imposing jail time on a person, the courts may deem that they attend court-ordered drug and alcohol rehab instead. The aim is to help a person overcome their addiction and receive the help and tools to do so, versus offering only punishment that wouldn’t necessarily alleviate the substance use disorder in the long term.

This method also helps rehabilitate a person so that they can begin to interact with society in a healthier manner. It’s also believed that it reduces the likelihood that a person become a repeat offender.

Court-Ordered Alcohol Rehab For A DUI Or DWI

Individuals who have received a DUI or DWI may be required to go to court-ordered alcohol rehab as part of their sentencing. Drunk driving laws can vary from state to state, and because of this, the exact sentencing requirements may vary.

But in general, if a person is pulled over and found to have a blood alcohol concentration over the legal limit (.08 percent or more in all 50 states) they may be arrested and taken to jail. After they’re released they will likely receive a court date, at which time they may be told they have to go to rehab in order to meet the demands of their sentence.

As part of this process, a person may be required to take educational classes on drinking and/or attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. By adhering to these requirements a person may have a lighter sentence, and, after fulfilling their sentence, their license may be reinstated.

Drug Courts And Court-Ordered Drug And Alcohol Rehab

Drug courts provide specialized court programs for people who are struggling with alcohol and drug dependency issues. According to the National Institute of Justice, this may include:

  • Criminal defendants and offenders
  • Juvenile offenders
  • Parents with pending child welfare cases

The most current data available from 2015 reports that there are over 3,000 drug courts in the US, the greatest number of which are for adults. Drug courts may be specialized for certain populations or at-risk groups. Types of drug courts for these groups include:

  • Campus
  • Co-occurring
  • DWI
  • Family
  • Juvenile
  • Federal District
  • Federal Veterans
  • Re-entry
  • Tribal
  • Veterans

While the primary aim of drug courts are to reduce substance abuse, these programs also target other areas of a person’s life that are affected by addiction, such as the social and behavioral impacts.

These benefits not only help the person struggling with the addiction, but the community they reside in. According to the National Drug Court Institute, local drug courts can improve communities by:

  • helping a person find sobriety.
  • stopping drug-related crime.
  • reuniting broken families.
  • helping juveniles before they become more involved with drugs or crime.
  • decreasing instances of impaired driving.

These benefits can also extend to the individual and those close to them. Some drug courts may offer resources that help an individual become more financially stable, that help a person to more successfully reintegrate into the workforce or that help them obtain their GED.

To encourage program involvement a person may receive rewards for positive behaviors and progress, while on the other hand there may be negative repercussions if they don’t fulfill the obligations as set out by the court.

Is Court-Ordered Treatment For Addiction Effective?

Many people may wonder if court-ordered treatment can be effective in helping a person find sobriety from drug or alcohol abuse. Though many people may be quick to assume that forced or involuntary treatment isn’t effective, research has shown otherwise.

A person doesn’t have to choose treatment in order for it to work. While embracing the need for treatment and desiring abstinence can have a positive impact on sobriety, people who unwillingly go to treatment can and do experience positive treatment outcomes.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, mandated treatment by the criminal justice system can produce the following favorable results:

  • Increased treatment entry
  • Increased treatment retention rates
  • Increased success of drug treatment interventions

As with any form of treatment, having an active support network of friends, family, church members, coworkers or any other close community members can help to boost a person’s resolve to find sobriety, a fact that can be a vital part of recovery for those who are required to go to court-ordered treatment.

Getting A Person To Court-Ordered Drug And Alcohol Rehab

A significant number of people who receive a sentence for court-ordered treatment are unwilling to go to treatment. In addition to this, a person may have had their license revoked when they were sentenced for their DUI or DWI.

For these reasons, it can be greatly beneficial to have a friend or family member transport a person to treatment. This ensures that they make it to and enter into the program. Further, the moral support can help lift their spirits and inspire them during this difficult time.

Paying For Court-Ordered Drug And Alcohol Addiction Treatment

Even though the court requires this treatment, it’s typically up to the person being sentenced to cover the cost of treatment.

While there are free or low-cost rehab programs for people who qualify, selecting treatment at a private facility (if an option) could give a person greater access to the treatments and therapies they need to beat addiction.

If a person is unable to cover the cost of treatment on their own, there are options that could supplement their out-of-pocket contribution. For many people, this comes in the form of insurance.

Though the copay, coinsurance, and deductible can vary from plan to plan and change the amount a person is responsible for, a large number of insurance plans do offer benefits that cover addiction treatment services. This coverage may include detoxification, outpatient and/or inpatient treatment.

If a person is still struggling after their insurance coverage, or if they’re underinsured or without insurance, additional options may exist that can help them meet their financial goal, such as:

  • Crowdfunding
  • Donations from loved ones
  • Income-based sliding fee scales
  • Medical credit cards
  • Monthly payment plans
  • Personal loans
  • Scholarships or grants

Finding A Court-Ordered Drug And Alcohol Rehab Program

The sentencing requirements and restrictions regarding court-ordered rehab may vary on a state-by-state and case-by-case basis. While some courts may limit a person’s options for treatment, others may allow a person greater flexibility when choosing a program. Prior to enrolling in treatment, it’s important for a person to understand these specifications.

Certain substances can create strong physical dependencies, and while it may not be required by the courts, a medical detox program may be beneficial to a person in this state. Alcohol, benzodiazepines and opioid drugs all have the potential to create severe withdrawal that may be best treated in a medically supervised detoxification program.

Once a person successfully detoxes, they can progress to treatment for psychological addiction. The type of treatment that is required can be different, but in general a person may have to enroll in either an outpatient or inpatient drug rehab program. Treatment may address addiction to the following substances:

  • Alcohol
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Cocaine (including crack)
  • Heroin
  • Illicit fentanyl
  • Marijuana
  • Methamphetamine
  • Prescription opioid painkillers (OxyContin, Vicodin, etc.)
  • Prescription ADHD stimulant medications (Adderall, Ritalin, etc.)
  • Synthetic cannabinoids (“fake weed”)

Additionally, the time a person is required to spend in treatment can vary. In general, treatment program lengths for any form of addiction treatment include:

  • 28- to 30- day programs
  • 60-day programs
  • 90-day programs
  • 120-day programs
  • 6-month programs
  • Long-term programs lasting a year or more

If the courts allow it, some people may want to consider choosing a more intensive, residential program that lasts longer so that they have a greater opportunity to build recovery success.

Contact Vertava Health today for more information on court-ordered drug and alcohol rehab.