If a charge involves drugs or alcohol, then a judge may order a substance abuse evaluation. Evaluations are administered from an agency that is certified through the state. Some states may require evaluation as part of the mandatory sentencing procedures.
A judge might require a substance abuse evaluation when you’re charged with:
There are certain documents that you’ll need to bring to the court ordered evaluation, which may be furnished by yourself or your attorney should you have one. These may include:
During the course of the evaluation, which typically takes between 60-90 minutes, you’ll have an interview with a person who is trained in substance abuse treatment. They will do an in-depth review of your substance abuse history and look over the documents you provide.
What’s the Point of A Court-Ordered Evaluation?
A court-ordered evaluation determines if an ongoing condition like substance use disorder (SUD) is present, or if there is not enough evidence to support a diagnosis. Even if there isn’t enough evidence, many states will still require you to undergo various programs or treatment obligations as deemed acceptable by the court.
Depending on the state, the incident/sentencing, and the recommendations of the agency that evaluated you, you may be required to attend one or more of the following:
Even though you did not choose these circumstances, it’s advantageous for you to begin this process immediately. Not only does this exhibit to the judge and prosecution that you take your responsibilities seriously, but it also helps coordinate the care and support you may need.
A Substance Abuse Evaluation Is A Tool to Help You Succeed
Though you might feel embarrassed, ashamed, or inclined to not be forthcoming about your substance use, an evaluation is ultimately for your own benefit. Treatment professionals cannot fully develop a plan without knowing your history of substance abuse or addiction.
This is also a time for you to be honest about any other factors that may influence your recovery options. The more honest you are, the greater the benefits. If you hide any habits or information, you’re only hurting yourself and hindering your chances for a healthier life.
If your substance abuse is having a negative impact on your life, or if you see this behavior in someone you love, don’t hesitate any longer—contact us today.