Mental Health Court is a specialty court program whereby participants, who have a qualifying Serious Mental Illness, may participate by complying with treatment and other directives put in place by the Court or other supporting Mental Health Court team members.
Primary objectives for participants are: keeping participants engaged in treatment in addition to focusing on sobriety, lawful behavior, and accountability. In order to be eligible, Mental Health Court candidates must not only have a qualifying Serious Mental Illness diagnosis but must also
be charged with a qualifying criminal offense and have no prior disqualifying charge(s) including but not limited to trafficking in or distributing drugs or crimes of violence. Participation in this specialty court is a privilege not a right. During a participant’s tenure in Mental Health Court, he or she will be required to regularly comply with frequent, random drug testing, regularly
meet with Mental Health Court case managers and/or other Mental Health Court team members, and comply with orders of placements into therapeutic mental health and/or substance abuse treatment programs/facilities. Failure to abide by placements and/or other
Mental Health Court orders will likely result in the participant being sanctioned which could vary from community service to possible jail time. The minimum length of time it takes for a participant to successfully complete and graduate from Mental Health Court will vary based on
the level of need for each participant and on that participant’s compliance (or lack thereof) during the program. The minimum range of time in Mental Health Court generally ranges from 6 to 18 months. In order to graduate from Mental Health Court, participants must have completed any and all programs mandated by the Court and must also have accumulated clean drug screens for a sustained period of 4 months or more. In order to graduate, a participant
must also have his or her fees and court costs fully paid and satisfied as well.