We know that divorce can be an emotional process, and it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. But you can and will get through this tough time in your life. To better ensure that you’re in the best position possible after divorce, though, you’ll need to engage in thorough preparation with a focus on how the law applies to the facts of your case.
Although your marriage dissolution might feel extraordinarily contentious, the truth of the matter is that the vast majority of divorce cases result in some sort of settlement before going to trial. There are many reasons for this, including saving time and costs as well as ensuring that important decisions about your future aren’t left to someone who doesn’t even know you, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be prepared to litigate your case. Instead, you should diligently prepare the arguments that support your position before you even sit down at the negotiation table.
Tips for preparing for divorce settlement negotiations
You can’t walk into your divorce settlement talks blindly or without a plan. Doing so puts you at risk of losing out on significant assets or even time with your children. Therefore, once you know divorce is a reality, you should start considering the following:
- Your financial reality: You can’t afford to lie to yourself as you enter divorce. You need to take a hard look at your financial reality and what your life is going to look like after divorce. Crunch the numbers regarding your income, expenses, and debts. This will help provide a financial roadmap as you navigate through your divorce.
- What do you need to get by: Divorce is a major financial transaction. Therefore, you need to identify what you really need, asset wise, to have stability post-divorce. This might be a residence, a vehicle, or certain bank accounts. These might be considered your non-negotiables.
- What your spouse needs: Your spouse will need certain things after marriage dissolution, too. If you can identify those assets, then you can develop a strategy that utilizes those assets to try to leverage a favorable outcome. If your needs overlap with your spouse’s, then you need to get creative in how you can use other assets to reach a fair resolution.
- What you want out of your divorce: There are going to be other things that you want out of your divorce. This can include certain items of personal property, or it could include spousal support or a specific child custody arrangement. Whatever it is, you need to be prepared to argue for it and craft a persuasive offer using other assets that might convince your spouse to agree with your proposal. One way to accomplish this is to develop your position in light of what you expect your spouse to want.
- The tone you’re going to take: Far too many people try to use divorce settlement negotiations as a way to unleash their emotions on their spouse. This probably won’t help you get to your end goal, however. Instead, it might stall talks and make it even harder for you to get what you want and need.
Do you want an advocate on your side?
A lot of people just want to wrap up their divorce quickly so that they don’t have to deal with their spouse anymore, but moving too fast could leave you at a disadvantage. But you don’t have to square off with your spouse on your own. Experienced divorce legal teams like ours can serve as a buffer between you and your spouse, provide you with support, and zealously advocate on your behalf throughout the process. Hopefully then you can achieve the outcome you desire so that you can step into the next chapter of your life with the stability you deserve.