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Involuntary Outpatient Commitment Laws

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Involuntary outpatient commitment requires the mandatory treatment of individuals with mental illness who meet certain criterion, such as danger to self or others. An individual may be placed directly into outpatient treatment with a court order or after the patient has already been placed in an inpatient treatment facility (more commonly referred to as conditional release). This dataset explores state laws and regulations that govern who can initiate the outpatient commitment process, the duration of commitment, whether the patient can refuse medication, what consequences exist for non-compliance, and whether outpatient commitment sets limits on the patient’s right to possess a firearm.

This dataset identifies and displays key features of such laws across all 50 states and the District of Columbia, and over time, from January 1, 2000, to March 1, 2016.


Dataset Details Supporting Documents
Created by the Center for Public Health Law Research Data
Date range: January 1, 2000 - March 1, 2016 Codebook
Jurisdictions: 50 states and the District of Columbia Protocol