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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
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good afternoon, my fiance has a son, age 16, with serious

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good afternoon,

my fiance has a son, age 16, with serious diagnosed mental and emotional problems including bi-polar disorder, add, adhd, additional learning problems, auditory and visual hallucinations, addictive behaviors, anti-social personality, defiance and reactive attachment disorder. he has been in 2 different residential treatment facilities in pa and in nj from july 2009-june 2010. he has been home with his family ( sister, age 13 and father, age 57: confined to a wheelchair due to type 2 adult onset diabetes, with an excellent full time job ) this young man has a diagnosed addiction to an online computer game. he is a compulsive over-eater. he lost his mother to cancer 14 months ago and has not been able to deal with grief issues. his father would like to have him enter a program at "turnabout ranch" for a minimum of 100 days. it would be a private pay situation followed immediately by a short stay in a more traditional treatment facility. the ranch concept of traditional values, hard work, constant monitoring by therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, and other members of a psych team, is something that is very different from anything that has been tried with this boy in the past. he is defiant, non-compliant re: his prescribed medications, unable to deal with his grief, anger at his father and at G-d, addiction, and he has been advised by his family counselor, who he sees weekly, as well as his concerned family, and of course, his dad, who is trying to be both parents as a single dad, that he needs to leave home in order to receive the help that he desperately requires.

his father is concerned that because he is already 16, almost 17, that he can refuse treatment as mandated by nj state law. i would like to know, on his father's behalf, what steps are needed to place his son in the turnabout ranch program if he will not go of his own free will. he is convinced that he is "counseled out", refuses all available help ( mentor provided by the state of nj, grief counselor that he refuses to meet with after the 1st time, and a number of other therapy related resource options. he has failed 9th grade twice. he has become more angry in the last several weeks and insists that "i just want to be left alone".
clearly, he needs help and his dad needs answers to allow him to follow through with his plan to have a medical transport company take him from his home in nj to "turnabout ranch" in utah.

please consider all aspects of my question, and anything that i did not ask about that needs to be addressed.

thank you very much for your prompt and kind assistance to my request.


jillXXXXX XXXXXmelman

p.s i have used your site many times concerning my own medical questions and have always been pleased with the results. this is the first time that i am requesting the services of an on-line lawer at "just"

Thank you for your question.

I will do my best to assist you with your issue. While I am permitted to provide you with legal information, I am prohibited by as well as various state bar associations from giving specific legal advice, provide representation, or enter into an attorney-client relationship through this open and non-confidential forum. Do you understand and agree to these provisions as well as's disclaimer?


Dimitry Alexander Kaplun, Esq.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

your information is needed urgently. i do accept your disclaimer, as does my fiance. we do not consider you "our lawyer" simply a source of well-researched valuable information.


thank you for taking the time to help us this afternoon.


i do have a status as a "valued client' due to the fact that i have used the services of this site to receive answers regarding medical questions. if that will help you to prioritorize my request, please verify my information and act accordingly.


i would prefer to be notified by text ((NNN) NNN-NNNN) when you have additional questions or when you are ready to provide a complete answer.


many thanks,


jillXXXXX XXXXXmelman

[email protected]

Ms. Kimmelman,

I am happy that you agreed to terms. However I am barred by JustAnswer policy to respond via text, email, or any other medium. Please be aware that I am working on your answer as we speak--I just wanted to inform you so that you will not log off as your answer is coming shortly.
Thank you for your patience. As it happens, I am licensed in both PA and NJ, so I am quite familiar with their rules and regulations in this situation.

First of all, because the child is still a minor, he cannot refuse to go. If he refuses, the parent can simply take him there by force, or can compel him via the Baker Act or an involuntary commitment, which is a means through which a person can be involuntarily committed for a period of 72 hours, and then kept by the psychiatrists until the guardian (the parent) consents to let him out, or the medical doctors believe that they have done all that they could under the circumstances. In either case, being a minor, the person cannot self-counsel, or leave on their own. The guardian or the doctor must consent. He cannot refuse treatment, especially if the involuntary commitment is utilized.

This is the link to the commitment form. Notice that it states "adult", and not "child"--a parent does not have to get such a permission in the case of a minor.

Hope that helps.

Edited by Dimitry Alexander Kaplun on 9/1/2010 at 6:14 PM EST
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