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Client Troubles? It's Time for Psychiatric Advice

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Friday, December 17, 2010
8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

(5 hrs. General; 1 hr. Ethic; 1 hr. Substance Abuse for Ohio and Kentucky)

At Stratford Heights Complex (across the street from UC Main gate on Clifton Ave.)

Dr. Douglas Mossman, Director, Weaver Institute for Law and Psychiatry
Marjorie Corman Aaron, Professor of Practice and Director, Center for Practice

Faculty Commentators and Demonstrators: Jeffrey Goodman, Esq., Marc D. Mezibov, Esq., Frank Mungo, Esq.

Lawyers can learn much from psychiatrists about working with clients who seem unable or unwilling to listen to reason. While not every “difficult client” would be diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder, narcissistic and borderline personality disorders are detectable even among high functioning clients. Other clients may function with “on-the-edge” world views affecting perception, reasoning, and decision making. In this interactive program, working with an actor as client and attorney-faculty as demonstrators, participants will be introduced to the theory, principles and practice of psychiatric counseling and effective non-advice giving.

The morning session will begin with demonstrations of how and why traditional ways of giving legal advice may not be effective, and the techniques a psychiatrist would use to counsel a client in a legal context.

At the end of the morning, we will discuss the ethics of counseling for clients having difficulty with reasoned decisions, reviewing issues of competency, the full informed client, authority and client as decision-maker, cognition, disclosure and privilege.

In the afternoon, psychiatrist faculty will teach us how to recognize or when to suspect fictitious claims of mental/emotional illness and damage as well as client denial or downplaying of psychological/emotional disorders and damages (and when to refer).

During the last program hour, participants will learn how a psychiatrist sees signs of substance abuse and sees through masking strategies, and will receive advice on raising the question or acknowledging the problem.

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