I'm an attorney in Florida. I am a former prosecutor and handled prosecuting these cases for the state. Now, as a defense attorney, I've handled several Baker Acts from the defense side as well.
As I suspect you know, Florida's Baker Act permits people to be involuntarily civilly committed if they are thought to be a danger to themselves or others based on mental health issues. According to law, the person can be held for up to 72 hours without a hearing.
During that time, the person is to be examined by at least one doctor. If, after an examination, the person is not considered to be a danger, they can be released. If, after an examination, the person is considered to be a danger, then the hearing must be held.
At the hearing, a judge makes a determination as to whether the person appears to be a danger. If so, they can be committed for a longer period of time.
If your brother was released, either before or after the hearing, then he is not subject to being re-committed. Having said that, if another report is made about his well-being he could be committed a second time under the Baker Act.
Also, several customers have asked how they may direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to assist you in your legal matter, just put "FOR JOSEPH" in the subject line and I will gladly pick up the question as soon as I am on-line.
The lack of a hearing is indicative of the doctor believing that your brother was not a danger to himself or others. The lack of a hearing is a positive thing for your brother. Once he was released, the "out-patient" recommendation was just that.......a recommendation. So no, he is not legally required to do anything further.
I apologize if I wasn't clear in the first post, a 72 hour hold is not necessary, it is the maximum amount of time the person can be held without a hearing. So, the fact that he did NOT spend 72 hours in the facility is not a bad thing. In fact, it is a good thing as it is indicative of him NOT having a problem.
As to the notations, I have no idea what "BA 40" means. As to "voluntary", I would suggest this is a positive as well as he was permitted to leave.
As a judge was never involved, your brother has no legal obligations here. A doctor cannot put any legal requirements on your brother. From a medical standpoint, it might be wise for your brother to seek follow-up, with whatever doctor he finds appropriate. From a legal standpoint, there is nothing he needs to do.
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