Negotiating Divorce Facts and Tips
The Big Picture

Couples negotiating a divorce must deal with the terms and conditions for the division and distribution of the marital estate (both its assets and liabilities) as well as spousal and child support and visitation. Maintaining financial security is an important consideration, but spouses must remember that the income that supported one household will now support two. This means reduced finances. 


Getting Started

In most divorces, one spouse wants out and one does not - at least at the onset. So negotiations may freeze when one person does not want the marriage to end. When marriages end, a surprising number of spouses fail to see the end at hand until the other spouse says it is over. Thus, the departing spouse may be way ahead of the person who does not see the breakup coming - at least emotionally and mentally. The person who is left may try to stall, sometimes in hope of a reunification, but as the divorce progresses, he or she moves toward the point where both spouses understand the marriage is over.

Holding Down Costs

Courts will approve a divorce agreement that is fair and reasonable. The more divorcing spouses can agree about the terms and conditions of their divorce, the less work there is for their lawyers and the lower their cost.

Leverage Factors in Divorce Negotiations

In divorce negotiations, each spouse may have considerations pertaining to the issues that are being disputed. For example, one leverage factor is: In whose interest is it to remain married longest? Answering this question can be a starting point of divorce negotiations because it creates leverage over the negotiations. A person prepared to wait has a bargaining tool that can be brought to bear in property negotiations. Delaying a divorce is a frequently used form of leverage.

Negotiations and a Good Faith Effort

Negotiation between spouses works when both act in good faith. A negotiated settlement dovetails easily in an uncontested divorce. Meeting in a neutral place, the spouses talk face to face and often offer tradeoffs of interests that they might otherwise claim. In this routine, their lawyers retreat to the role of advisors who keep their clients on track, moving toward a fair and reasonable settlement.

Divorce and the Marital Home

Many custodial parents want to keep the marital home so that the routines of small children are less disturbed by the divorce. A house can also be a valuable asset, but one should consider ownership expenses before taking on the responsibility. A house is a barren asset; it pays nothing until it is sold. Selling the home and walking away with cash may be a better decision.

Divorce and Retirement

The age of full entitlement for Social Security for most people is now 66 and older. If Social Security is a major part of a person’s retirement income, the hike in age may be a consideration when negotiating a divorce settlement.

Divorce and Health Insurance

Courts require parents to provide medical insurance for their children when the spouses have access to insurance. If neither spouse has health insurance, the custodial parent should ask that the insurance cost be factored into the amount of child support paid. Moreover, under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation (COBRA), the divorced spouse of a person who works for a company with 20 or more employees is eligible for COBRA medical overage for three years after the divorce.

Divorce and College

Divorcing spouses should consider the terms and conditions of their college expenses, including out of pocket expenses. Both parents and children are better served when this is decided at the time of the initial settlement agreement, even if the children are very young.

Divorce and Living Expenses

The parents must consider the cost of living, including extracurricular activities and daycare and even transportation. Some state courts allow these expenses to be negotiated into the amount of child support paid.


Useful Online Tools
  • Negotiating Your Divorce Online - You will be surprised how easy it is to resolve your disputes through our innovative Divorce Negotiation CenterTM. It's FREE. Give it a try.

Separation Agreement Software
Download Product   
   
Separation Agreement Software
It is very difficult to move on with your life without getting the facts in writing, like, who gets what property and who is responsible for what debt, so a separation agreement outlines the rules in a legally binding format. Once you have a signed separation agreement you are on the right path to successfully negotiating your divorce settlement.


Suggested Reading
Fairshare Divorce for Women Fairshare Divorce for Women
Fair Share Divorce for Women is the first book that gives women the support and guidance they need to safeguard their marital assets. Too often women find themselves at a disadvantage when their marriage ends and they have to fight for what is rightfully theirs.

Author: Kathleen Miller, CFP, MBA


Related Article Archives
Client/Attorney Relationship
Collaborative Law
Property & Debt Division
Premarital Agreements
Private Investigation
Mediation
    All Article Archives

Related Categories
Alimony & Spousal Support
Divorce & Pets
Divorce, Dollars & Debt
Divorce Laws
Divorce Process
Lawyer-Client Relationship
Men's & Father's Rights
Women's & Mother's Rights
    All Categories
Related Forums
DIY Divorce
Financial Aspects
Lawyer Issues
Mediation
Men's Rights
Women's Rights
    All Forums

Resources & Tools

Bookstore Promotion Discount

Start Your Divorce Online Start Your Divorce
Several Options to Get Started Today.
Divorce Tools Online Divorce Tools
Keeping it Simple to Get the Job Done.
Divorce Downloads Download Center
Instantly Download Books, Guides & Forms.
Divorce and Custody Books Discount Books
Over 100 of the Best Divorce & Custody Books.
Negotiate Online Negotiate Online
Settle your Divorce and Save.
Custody and Support Tracking Custody Scheduling
Make Sure You Document Everything.
   
LEVERAGE FACTORS -- In divorce negotiations, each spouse may have considerations pertaining to the issues that are being disputed. For example, one leverage factor is, in whose interest is it to remain married longer? Answering this question can be a starting point of divorce negotiations because it creates leverage over the negotiations.
Start Divorce

Easily Connect With a Lawyer or Mediator
Have Divorce Professionals from Your Area Contact You!
Enter Your Zip Code:

 

Online Divorce Negotiation

Online Divorce Negotiation

So you and your spouse have a few issues to iron out before you can agree on your divorce? You are not alone, but you do not have to spend thousands on a lawyer to reach an agreement. With just a little participation and communication, you will be surprised how easy it is to resolve your disputes through our innovative Divorce Negotiation CenterTM. It's FREE. Give it a try.

 

Featured Download Basic Principles of Law for Construing Separation Agreements

Basic Principles of Law for Construing Separation Agreements

Basic Principles of Law for Construing Separation Agreements

Start Reaching Potential Clients Today. Divorce Source for Professionals

Guarantee Official PayPal Seal Facebook Twitter Versign Secure Site
Limited Offer Women's Rights Manual For Divorce
Cover Price: $55.95
Your Price: $29.95
You Save: $26.00

"The Absolute Best Investment in Your Divorce"

Men's Rights Manual For Divorce
Cover Price: $55.95
Your Price: $29.95
You Save: $26.00

"Uncover Your Options and Unleash Solutions"