Unless you and your spouse can settle your divorce issues on your own, you’re going to be required to participate in mediation before you can bring your case to court for litigation. This means that you absolutely need to be prepared to negotiate in good faith. That’s not to say that you have to acquiesce to everything your spouse requests, but you don’t need to create conflict where conflict isn’t warranted. So how do you strike a balance between the two?
Developing your divorce mediation strategy
Just like with other types of dispute resolution, you need to enter divorce mediation with some sort of strategy. What that strategy will look like depends on a number of factors. Each of the following should be taken into consideration, therefore, as you prepare for your mediation:
- Your “must haves”: What do you need to get by post-divorce? This is a powerful question that you need to carefully consider. Is it a certain amount of monthly income? A home? A car? Whatever you need, identify it and write it down. These will serve as your non-negotiable issues and can set the bounds of your mediation.
- Your wants: Of course, there are going to be a lot of things that you want out of your mediation, but that you don’t necessarily need. Identify these, too, so that you know how you want to steer settlement talks.
- Your spouses needs and wants: Conduct the same analysis on your spouse. By doing so, you can identify key areas for negotiation and areas where you might be able to use leverage to get what you need or want.
- Tone: Again, you should probably try to avoid conflict if it isn’t needed since it usually does nothing else than stall settlement talks and prolong the process and increase the costs.
- Know when enough is enough: If you’re getting pushed around in your divorce mediation, you don’t have to sit back and take it. Just because you’re required to mediate doesn’t mean that you have to come to a resolution. So, before you sit down at the table, know what positions you spouse might take that will warrant walking away.
Have an ally on your side
Crafting a legal strategy and addressing divorce legal issues can be challenging, especially when you’re dealing with the emotions that come with divorce. That’s why it might be best for you to have an ally on your side who can help you craft the arguments and strategies that you need. If you think that you could benefit from legal assistance, then consider reaching out to an experienced and proven attorney of your choosing.