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  • Costly disputes that drag on for years are often driven by high conflict personalities which present a significant risk to the lawyers involved.
  • Lawyers and other professionals can become targets of high conflict personalities.
  • There are skills to effectively deal with high conflict personalities and defuse these incendiary disputes.

We generally assume that legal disputes centre around issues, and the more difficult the issues are, the more intractable the dispute.

However, in much litigation, the legal questions are long settled and the issues in question are not necessarily complex. While some matters that end up in the courtroom may involve important questions of law which require judicial resolution, many matters that proceed to a final hearing are driven not by the complexity of the issues at stake, but by a high level of conflict between the parties.

Bill Eddy, co-founder of the High Conflict Institute, conducted research into complex, highly emotional legal matters and concluded that high conflict disputes were driven not by esoteric legal issues or convoluted factual backgrounds, but by the personalities of the parties. Specifically, in many cases, by the personality of only one of the parties who he described as a high conflict personality.

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