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Managing High Conflict Clients: Ethical & Risk Management Considerations

6.00 CE Hours Available
3.00 CE Hours Ethics

Clients with “high conflict” personality disorders or traits pose several risks for therapists, including boundary violations, ethical complaints, recruiting therapists to take sides in their personal or legal disputes, administrative hearings, lawsuits, online shaming, and violence.

This 1-day Webinar will address research on the common conflict dynamics of Cluster B personality disorders, warning signs of potential risk to therapists, how to avoid malpractice in high conflict cases, techniques for managing high conflict clients, and managing risks with family members and other professionals, including lawyers.

All orders include the entire presentation with handouts and a CE test.
Streaming videos and audio downloads will be available immediately after checkout
Mailed CD and DVD formats include the printed handouts and CE test in an attractive portfolio

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Streaming Video
Audio Download
CD Audio w/ Audio Download
DVD Video w/ Streaming Video


Participants will be able to:

  • Identify patterns of high risk behavior of Cluster B personality disorders.
  • Identify diagnostic criteria of four Cluster B personality disorders.
  • Describe the four factors of legal malpractice.
  • Apply a skill for calming high-conflict clients with empathy, attention and respect.
  • Identify how to set limits on provocative behavior with clients while maintaining calm.
  • Apply a skill of writing ethical emails that are brief, informative, friendly and firm.


Understanding Cluster B: The High Conflict Personality Disorders

  • Research on personality disorders as interpersonal disorders especially Cluster B
  • Overview of DSM-5-TR Cluster B diagnostic criteria and common high conflict behaviors
  • Identifying high conflict clients with the WEB Method®
  • Addressing brain dynamics of some high conflict personalities

Avoiding Ethical and Legal Actions by High Conflict Clients

  • Understanding and avoiding legal malpractice
  • Ethically responding to the sexually or financially seductive client
  • Ethically responding to the disclosure of illegal behavior
  • Ethically and safely terminating or transferring a high conflict client.

Techniques for Managing High Conflict Personalities

  • Structuring the therapist-client relationship to minimize risk
  • Calming upset clients with EAR Statements®
  • Setting limits with the CARS Method®
  • 10 Tips for avoiding lawsuits and administrative hearings

Managing risk from Family Members and Other Professionals

  • Family members and professionals as negative advocates
  • Communicating with aggressive people with a written BIFF Response®
  • Dealing with lawyers pro and con
  • Managing your own stress in high-conflict situations