Negotiating a Settlement Agreement
Negotiating a settlement is often one of the best ways to quickly resolve a divorce, as it can save couples both time and money in the long run. Furthermore, divorce proceedings that go to trial can be stressful, especially for children, so avoiding this result is often in a family’s best interest. However, even those who are able to resolve their differences during negotiations should be represented by an experienced divorce attorney who can ensure that their interests are protected and that the agreement is legally enforceable.
Going to trial to obtain a divorce has its downsides. For instance, in most cases, details of a divorce become a matter of public record and although this may not be a concern for most couples, it can become a problem for business owners and high profile members of the community who do not want their financial information made public. Going to trial also takes control out of the hands of the couple, leaving major decisions up to a judge who is restrained by strict rules and who may not have a full grasp of a family’s circumstances. For these reasons, it is often in a family’s best interests to attempt to reach a settlement regarding property division, child support, and parenting time. Unfortunately, these negotiations are not always easy or straightforward, so it’s a good idea to have an attorney present who can explain the short and long-term consequences of a proposed settlement. Negotiations are a process of compromise, so the end result will largely depend on how important a particular point is for one of the parties and whether the other individual is willing to concede.
Assessing Your Needs
Spouses who are just beginning the process of divorce negotiations should consider creating a list of expectations and needs, rather than unequivocal demands. For instance, instead of demanding possession of the family home or car, one of the parties could explain the main concern of providing a stable environment for the couple’s children. This makes it more likely that the other party will be willing to compromise. Both spouses will also need to reassess and adjust their financial expectations, which also includes determining short and long-term needs. Couples should also have a thorough understanding of the tax consequences of transferring certain assets. For instance, transferring the contents of a retirement account can trigger significant tax liability and potential fines.
Speak with an Experienced Fort Lauderdale Divorce Attorney Today
Although negotiating a divorce settlement is often preferable to going to trial, it can still be a difficult process, making it especially important for divorcing couples to retain an attorney who will know which assets are marital and separate and can identify any gaps in the agreement that could lead to litigation down the road. For help negotiating your own divorce settlement, please call 954-945-7591 to speak with dedicated Fort Lauderdale divorce attorney Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. Initial consultations are conducted free of charge, so please don’t hesitate to call or contact us online.