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Matthew Casey Wethington Act for Substance Abuse Intervention

Casey’s Law allows the parents, relatives or friends of an addicted person to lawfully intervene and request involuntary, court-ordered addiction treatment for their loved one.


Steps Involved in Casey’s Law:

1. The petitioner must complete a petition form. (Which can find it at and look under Casey’s Law Kentucky / Steps in the Process).

2. File the petition with your county’s Circuit Clerk.

3. The court will review the petition, take an “under oath” statement from you, and make a decision.

4. If the court agrees that there is probably cause to proceed with the process, the addicted person will be notified and a hearing will occur within 2 weeks.

5. The addicted person will be under court order to be assessed by 2 healthcare professionals, one of which must be a physician.

6. The court will decide whether or not the addicted person must complete involuntary addiction treatment (duration of treatment: between 60— 360 days).

7. The petitioner will be responsible for locating a treatment facility and paying any treatment fees. This act provides a means of intervening with someone who is unable to recognize their own need for treatment due to their impairment.


Studies show that involuntary treatment can be just as effective as voluntary treatment. Denial and distorted thinking impede a person’s ability to make a rational decision but once in treatment, many people realize that their chemical dependency is more than they can handle on their own.

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