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  • California 5150 Question

    My brother in law has faced some serious hardships over the last few years and it has finally resulted in serious marital issues (he's now living with his parents), and serious mental issues. He is disabled as a result of an at work accident, is on a variety of medications, etc.

    Basically, now the situation is he has been unable to stand up to the test and has completely fallen apart. He takes meds, lays in bed all day, does not eat, does not shower, cries and vomits all the time and lies about calling the docs. I think he is basically trying to kill himself slowly, though I have not heard him say that he wants to hurt himself specifically.

    Recently he was brought home by a police officer who stopped him from driving erratically due to meds/exhaustion, who was generous enough not to arrest him for a DUI and instead we tried to get him to agree to self admit, but he answered all the 5150 questions "correctly", and the officer could not force his hand.

    Question is, at what point can I or his parents or anyone get him to be admitted for at least a phych eval, it is my opinion that that is the kind of help he needs at this point. He is 32 with 3 kids and is unable to care for himself, let alone the kids. In fact I have one of his kids here at my house now because he's 9 and was basically left unattended.

    Any guidance on this issue would be much appreciated, thanks.

  • #2
    contact the social services agency in your county. they will provide referral and other information for you and your brother in law's situation.


    good luck.
    ''Life's tough......it's tougher if you're stupid.''
    -- John Wayne

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    • #3
      +1 on the above. Unless one is an immediate danger to himself, others or gravely disabled they cannot be taken into custody (per 5150 WIC) for an involuntary examination or treatment of mental health issues. Often, mental health professionals can convince people who are "borderline" to self admit and a call to your local social service agency can get assistance.
      "I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."

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      • #4
        Check your local courts on conservatorship of him. Once you gain conservatorship you can make medical decisions for him and place him in a board and care type home. Here is some information on it...


        A conservatorship is a legal arrangement in which an adult oversees the personal care or financial matters of another adult considered incapable of managing alone. The incapacitated person is the "conservatee" and the person who takes over care is called the "conservator". A conservatorship may be created when an adult person is unable to properly provide for his or her personal needs for physical health, food, clothing or shelter. This is called a conservatorship of the person.

        A conservatorship may also be created when an adult person is unable to manage his or her own financial resources or resist fraud or undue influence. This is called a conservatorship of the estate. Sometimes it is necessary to establish a conservatorship of both the person and the estate.

        An adult person may voluntarily request the appointment of a conservator. A conservatorship may also be created for a minor who is married or whose marriage has been dissolved, and who otherwise meets the criteria for an adult conservatorship, or for a member of the uniformed services or other agency of the United States, who is officially determined to be missing.

        Conservatorships are heard in the probate department of the superior court. Many of the forms used for filing a conservatorship petition are the same as those used for filing for a guardianship of a minor.

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