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Psychometric properties of the German version of the fears of compassion scalesThe cultivation of compassion is associated with beneficial effects on physical and psychological health, satisfaction with life and social relationships. However, some individuals, especially those high in psychopathological symptoms or those with particular disorders such as borderline personality disorder (BPD) may demonstrate pronounced fears of engagement in compassionate experiences or behaviours. Furthermore, fears of compassion have been found to impede progress in psychotherapy. The 38‐item fears of compassion scales (FCS) is a self‐report questionnaire for measuring trait levels of fears of compassion (a) one receives from others (FCFO), (b) one feels towards others (FCTO) and (c) one feels for oneself (self‐compassion; FSC). The FCS is an internationally used instrument of proven validity and reliability in both clinical and nonclinical samples. In the present study, a German translation of the FCS including its three subscales was provided, and the psychometric properties were examined in 430 participants from four different samples: (a) a sample from the general population; (b) a mixed sample of psychiatric residential and outpatients; (c) a clinical sample of residential and outpatients with a primary diagnosis of BPD and (d) a sample of healthy control participants. Internal consistencies were excellent for the German version of the FSC and acceptable to excellent for its subscales. Correlations with established measures of mental health demonstrate its validity. Additionally, the German FCS discriminates significantly between individuals from the general population and patients, thus supporting its specificity. The German FCS is suitable to detect potential obstacles in cultivating compassion in psychotherapeutic treatments and beyond.