We compared the relationships between response to a crisis intervention program and long-term outcome in 31 depressed outpatients with and without DSM-III-R personality disorders (PD). The presence of PD predicted a poorer 2-year outcome. PD subjects with better working alliance and increased insight at termination of crisis intervention had increased compliance with long-term psychiatric treatment (p < .005) and better 2-year outcome (p < .005). Increased compliance with long-term psychiatric treatment predicted better long-term outcome in PD patients (p < .005). None of these significant relationships was observed in the comparison group without PD, suggesting that establishing an effective treatment process may be especially important for outcome in PD patients.