Participant FAQs

What can I do to get an incarcerated family member into the Forensic Intensive Recovery (FIR) Program?

You need to contact the Defender Association at 215-568-3190 and ask to refer him/her to FIR. Further information will be required before the process takes place.

Why is an evaluation required before going into FIR?

The evaluation process is part of the legal stipulation the judge ordered. This allows FIR to identify a facility that can provide the best treatment during recovery, based on information received from you. If you fail to appear or refuse your evaluation, you will be in violation of the judge's orders and will be referred back to the Defenders Association for further processing, or returned to prison for continuation of your original sentence.

May I contact the case manager to find out how a participant is doing? May I contact the FIR main offices?

Due to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) Privacy Rule, most parties are not authorized to speak to you. It is best to obtain status/progress updates directly from your family member. Participants in the FIR program can call their case managers to discuss their progress.

I'm not comfortable with the provider from whom I'm receiving treatment. What can I do?

Contact your case manager and express your concerns. He/she will listen to you and provide the best possible solution.

Why does my house need to be checked when a FIR participant comes to live with me?

A house check is necessary to determine if your home is a supportive environment for the participant to live in while working on his/her recovery. The FIR Housing Coordinator will contact you to explain the nature of the visit. Once they complete the house check, you will be notified if your home is approved. If your home is denied, the participant will be placed in a recovery residence for the remainder of his/her treatment.

What happens after I complete FIR?

Your case manager will provide you with information on services and organizations that you may contact to continue your road to recovery.

Who do I call to be admitted into the FIR program?

If you are represented by a public defender, you need to contact The Public Defenders Association of Philadelphia. If you are represented by a private attorney; that attorney needs to call The Public Defenders Association. 

How long does it take for a FIR evaluation to be completed?

It depends on when the referral was submitted. However, we have 16 business days to complete the evaluation once the referral is received.