Pros And Cons Of Making A Negotiable/Non-Negotiable List During A Divorce

When you're preparing for a divorce, you can expect that there may be a considerable amount of negotiations with your soon-to-be spouse. Before you enter into these conversations, it may be worthwhile for you to sit down — perhaps with some help from your divorce attorney — and make a negotiable/non-negotiable list. As its name suggests, this list will outline the things that you're willing to negotiate on, and those that you're not. Here are some pros and cons of making such a list.

Pro: It Provides Clarity

Divorce negotiations can be filled with tension, and it's easy to be so focused on your emotions that you aren't in a position to make the best decisions. In a moment of weakness, you can agree to something that you later regret, but such an issue will be less likely if you have a negotiable/non-negotiable list. For example, if you've written that you're not up for negotiating breaking up a set of antique silverware that has been in your family for a long time, you'll be less likely to mistakenly do so.

Con: It Can Make You Unwilling To Compromise

During divorces, many people find that they need to compromise in certain areas. Doing so can be effective for working things out with a minimal amount of contention. However, the presence of a negotiable/non-negotiable list may actually harm your ability to be flexible. For example, if your spouse presents you with a fair idea for a compromise, but the subject matter appears on the non-negotiable side of your list, you might reject the idea immediately.

Pro: It Encourages Fairness

You may find that making a negotiable/non-negotiable list helps you to fairly assess the division of your assets. Without a list, it's easy to think of all the things that you want, but not necessarily realize that you aren't leaving much for your spouse to take. While a negotiable/non-negotiable list isn't a list of your assets per se, it allows you to identify where you're willing to be flexible and where you're not, and this can be good for fairness.

Con: It Can Be Time Consuming

Dealing with a divorce often means that your attention is pulled in a number of directions concurrently. Taking the time to draft up a negotiable/non-negotiable list can be time consuming, especially if you really want to put some deep thought into how willing you are to negotiate about certain things. You may feel as though you lack the time in the day to compile this list.

Contact a firm, like Cooper Levenson Attorneys At Law , for more help.