Prevention of Substance Abuse in the Legal Profession

Prevention of Substance Abuse in the Legal Profession

Prevention of Substance Abuse in the Legal Profession

Substance abuse is a major problem in the legal profession and one that create risk for the lawyer and the law firm when a lawyer’s faculties are impaired.

Studies show that when future lawyers enter law school, they are generally healthier mentally and physically than the general population.  However, upon entering law school and graduating from law school, the rates of depression, anxiety and substance abuse increase dramatically.  Many lawyers turn to legal and illegal substances to help their moods, stay awake, sleep or cope with the increased stress in the profession.  This is a “dirty secret” that the legal industry is now being made aware of, while law firms and lawyers seek ways to raise awareness to this problem and help lawyers who need it.

In many jurisdictions in the US, lawyers are required to complete at least one hour for each compliance period for Continuing Legal Education (CLE)  of awareness training on substance abuse and the prevention thereof.   While Hong Kong solicitors do not currently have a CPD requirement for this training, Legal Beagle thinks it is an important topic that needs more awareness in the Hong Kong legal market.  Therefore, we are proud to introduce our course, “Prevention of Substance Abuse in the Legal Profession.”  This online CPD course is accredited for CPD credit in Hong Kong.

The online CPD course discusses the issues in the legal profession, how to identify substance abuse problems in the legal profession, and how to prevent and manage those risks.  Lawyers admitted in California may be permitted to use this course to claim credit for their substance abuse prevention requirement in addition to their Hong Kong CPD/RME requirements.  We encourage lawyers who are also admitted in California to view  http://www.calbar.ca.gov/Attorneys/MCLE-CLE/Rules for more details.

Dr. Michael Eason instructs this course.  Dr. Eason obtained his PhD from City University of Hong Kong.  He also hold a Master’s degree in Psychology in addition to an advanced Specialist in Education degree in Guidance and Counselling. Dr. Eason is a Licensed Professional Counsellor and a National Certified Counsellor in the US, with memberships in the Psychotherapy Society of Hong Kong, The Hong Kong Professional Counselling Association, the American Counseling Association and the American Psychological Association.

With more than 13 years of experience, he has worked in both outpatient and inpatient mental health settings since 2005. He has worked clinically with both adolescents and adults for psychotherapy and counselling, including clients with substance abuse issues and dual or multiple diagnoses. Dr. Eason has lectured in psychology part-time at City University of Hong Kong and at Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). He also delivers workshops and presentations in a number of areas, and has presented academic research output at international conferences in Hong Kong, Japan, and the United Kingdom.

For more reading on the substance abuse program in the legal profession:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/15/business/lawyers-addiction-mental-health.html

https://www.psychologytoday.com/intl/blog/sure-recovery/201707/drug-and-alcohol-abuse-in-the-legal-profession

https://www.americanbar.org/groups/lawyer_assistance/research/colap_hazelden_lawyer_study/