Negotiated Settlements

Couple hand sign legal divorce documents, contract or paper deal in a lawyer office with ring placed on table. Woman and man with signature on marriage paperwork after agreement at family law office

What is a Divorce Negotiation?

A divorce negotiation is technical and multi-faceted, as it aims to resolve all issues facing the couple, including child custody and parenting time, division of assets and debts, child support and spousal support.

In a divorce negotiation, each party hires his or her own attorney. The attorneys meet with their respective clients to gather information and learn about the clients' interests and goals. The two attorneys then exchange the necessary financial information, analyze it, and make offers and counter-offers. When an agreement is reached, the attorneys draft a legally binding contract which serves as the basis for an uncontested divorce.

What Makes a Divorce Negotiation Successful?

The vast majority of divorces in New York are resolved through negotiations between counsel, although some negotiations may take place with the backdrop of a concurrent court case. A successful negotiation requires:

  • Two parties who are motivated to resolve their dispute and eliminate or reduce the time spent in court; and
  • Attorneys who are skilled and experienced in family law.

Unlike mediation or collaborative divorce, a traditional divorce negotiation need not involve face to face meetings between the parties. Therefore, it is a good option for couples who want to avoid or reduce the cost and delay of litigation, but who are reluctant to participate in a process that involves extensive, direct conversation with each other.

Law and Mediation Office of ToniAnn Grande