What Is a 302 Commitment in Pennsylvania?

A 302 commitment in Pennsylvania is an involuntary commitment into a mental health institute for emergency psychiatric evaluation. The person who signs or calls for the 302 must have direct first hand knowledge of the person and the danger they pose to themselves or others.

In order for a person to be considered a danger to themselves or others, there are things that must occur within the 30 days prior to the submission of the 302. Those items can include the inability to feed themselves or care for themselves without the supervision of another person, attempted suicide or suicidal threats and self mutilation.

Under a 302 commitment, the hospital can hold the admitted person for a maximum of 120 hours. To be held longer, a 303 petition must be filed by the same person who filed the 302, and it must be approved by a mental health hearing officer. A 303 commitment lasts for a maximum of 20 days.