It might be one of the last things you want to do, but being a good negotiator is part of divorce that can help you start a new future.
Proper negotiation around issues like who keeps the marital home, financial arrangements, child and spousal support, and more can really make a difference in your new life. Negotiation is an important part of the divorce process, and in the end should be fair for both parties.
There are some things to keep in mind when you start the negotiation process. Divorce Negotiating Tips – 7 Do’s and Don’ts at the Divorce with Dignity website gives some helpful advice on getting started. Among those Do’s and Don’ts are:
- DO make a prioritized list of what you want
- DO listen to the other side
- DON’T be in a hurry, and
- DON’T give anything away without getting something in return
The article also advises that when you do reach an agreement MAKE SURE to get it in writing, cautioning: “Oral agreements are the first step, but the negotiations are not complete until the divorce settlement decisions are put into writing in detail. Memories can be faulty and having the written proof of what was agreed on enables you to avoid the bickering that can occur when there is disagreement about what was decided.”
More to think about comes from collaborative lawyer M. Marcy Jones who says negotiations, with the help of a skilled attorney, can keep you from settling a divorce with a trial. That can keep your costs from spiraling out of control.
“Clients typically believe that getting divorced means getting ugly with each other and having to go to court to get things settled. This is not true. There are a number of ways to get divorced without going to court (and without getting ugly), ways that are better for everyone involved,” she writes, adding, “Get the help you need to figure out how to improve your communication with your spouse, so that, even though your marriage is ending, your relationship continues in the most positive way possible.”