Divorce Negotiating Tips/Martin Rosenfeld

Posted on July 1, 2013

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You have chosen to mediate, have a mediator and are now ready to negotiate. What do you need to do now? A recent blog appeared at http://www.breakupcarepackage.blogspot.com. Five of the suggestions will be outlined here.

1.Have a checklist of what you wish to discuss.
It is difficult to keep everything in mind during negotiation talks. Politicians have their prompters, speakers have notes, and parties to a divorce need a list of what they wish to discuss. The discussions can be personal, can be long, and can be trying. A list of items, and the order you wish for their discussion, is a helpful item to prepare.

2.Disclose all relevant information.
Parties often ask me how they will know if they are getting the right and truthful information from their spouse. I tell them two thins. Firstly, they are both adults and both know the meaning of “good faith”. People usually rise to the occasion in such situations. Secondly, an agreement based on faulty information can easily be rejected by a Court once the falsehoods are discovered. Honesty is the only policy here.

3.Be creative and flexible.
I am always taken aback by how creative parties can be when drafting an agreement. Keep an open mind and learn to listen as much as you talk.

4.Keep painful emotions out of the equation.
Both parties are likely suffering in the divorce process. There is no need to discuss how hurt you are unless there is a specific goal you can articulate. Check your emotions, as best you can, at the door.

5.Go through the house and see what you wish to claim as your property.
Property division in a divorce can be tough. Most parties, I find, do succeed in dividing their property by agreement. When this is not achievable, good mediation practice can get you over the hump.

Divorce is never easy. By being prepared, honest, and flexible you can minimize the trauma as you plan for your life’s next chapter.

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