No Harm Contract Template

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(Commitment To Living Agreement)

Video & audio overview of the template

What is the theory behind the template?

Recent research suggests that no harm or no suicide contracts are not as effective as originally thought. However, there has not been adequate research to confirm this. 

Framing these contracts as commitment to living agreements offers a client more self-empowerment and less feelings of possible judgment. These agreements are also set positively with clear actions to take if intrusive thoughts or self-harm urges arise.

These agreements can also benefit from having a safety plan attached to them.

How will the template help?

This template offers a basic structure of a commitment to living agreement. This can be included when you complete your intake forms if you are aware that the client has self-harm tendencies or is at risk of suicidal ideation and attempts.

How to use the template?

You can use the template as is, or adjust it according to your specific practice. However, you may wish to have this handwritten or made the client’s own so that the importance of it is more than ‘another form that they fill in’.

It is a good idea that the client has a copy of this agreement and the therapist keeps a copy in the client’s file.

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Rudd, M., Mandrusiack, M., Joiner, T. (2006). The Case Against No-Suicide Contracts: Commitment to Treatment as a Practice Alternative. Journal of Clinical Psychology: In Session, 62(2).