What is Negotiated Settlement?
Not all roads lead to trial.
Negotiated settlement divorce looks at litigation as the last option when it comes to divorce resolution. A litigated divorce is one where the parties use the legal system to resolve their divorce. Approximately 95% of all divorce cases end in settlement before trial. However, in the context of litigation, the emotional and financial damage inflicted along the way to your settlement can be devastating.
How It Works.
Negotiated settlement divorce is the middle ground between mediation and collaborative divorce. Perhaps you and your spouse decide that neither of those options are right for you, but you both agree that you want your divorce to be non-adversarial and private. Maybe the thought of speaking for yourself in mediation or the full team approach of collaborative divorce feels overwhelming.
In the process of negotiated settlement divorce, each party hires an attorney with the informal understanding that neither side will commence an Action for Divorce. This process lacks the formal participation agreement utilized in collaborative divorce. Your attorneys advocate for your rights and interests, but do so in a non-adversarial, cooperative manner.
In a litigated divorce, negotiations occur simultaneously with trial preparation and the discovery process is more formal. In a purely negotiated case, both parties freely exchange financial information and documents with a singular focus on resolving their case. There are no counsel fees incurred for simultaneous trial preparation.
This process requires both spouses to agree to resolve their disputes in their own way, on their own time and without involvement of the Court. Neither party waives their right to go to Court but both spouses are like-minded in their desire to avoid doing so.
Litigation as a last resort.
If you choose the litigation process, you must understand that you have relinquished a great deal of control over the timing and outcome of your divorce. While we believe a courtroom is not the ideal forum for the resolution of family matters, sometimes a trial is the only viable path to resolution. We pride ourselves on making every attempt to ensure that this is the option of last resort.
“War does not determine who is right – only who is left.”
– Bertrand Russel