101 Kids and the Law When a judge commits a child to a substance use treatment facility, how does the child get there? The child is taken in a sheriff’s van. The parent or guardian goes separately to the facility to sign paperwork that authorizes treatment. How long does the involuntary commitment last? The judge may commit the child for up to 90 days. The treatment facility must accept the child and provide substance use treatment. The facility determines the length of stay at the facility. Usually, the child is released from the residen- tial treatment facility and returns home after a week or less. Does the court pay for the residential substance use treatment when the judge orders it? No, the treatment is paid for by the family’s private insurance or by state fund- ing through the Department of Public Health. The laws regarding hospitalization for substance abuse treatment are found in Massachusetts General Laws chapter 123, Section 35. Mental Health and Substance Use Issues 8