Psychotherapy termination: clinical and ethical responsibilities



The successful termination of the psychotherapy relationship is each psychotherapist's goal. Yet, a number of circumstances may arise that interfere with the successful completion and termination of treatment. This article addresses both termination and abandonment and illustrates the applicable guidelines and standards from the American Psychological Association's (2002) Ethics Code. We conclude with 12 recommendations for proactively addressing termination and abandonment consistent with professional standards and each patient's best interests. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Clin Psychol:In Session 64: 653–665, 2008.