People sometimes react to the end of their marriage in strange ways, making decisions that are not in their own best interests, or rushing through aspects of the divorce process that deserve a more careful approach. When faced with the end of a marriage, Colorado spouses should understand that the choices that are made can have lasting ramifications. Nowhere is this more true than in regard to the division of marital assets.
One of the biggest mistakes that spouses can make is to devise a property division offer and then present that offer to their soon-to-be ex as a “take it or leave it” type of proposition. While divorce does involve negotiations, these discussions have very little in common with other forms of negotiation. Most importantly, spouses have no ability to “take their business elsewhere” if they do not get the property division settlement that is sought. They have only two options: work out a settlement with their spouse or allow the courts to take over that task.
Making a “take it or leave it” type of offer may feel like the right thing to do to move the process forward, but this approach rarely works. Many times, the other party will know that this bargaining tactic is little more than a bluff. Often, both spouses feel confident that a family law court will side in their favor, even though the division of assets that a court determines can be difficult for both parties to accept.
When faced with the division of marital assets, Colorado spouses are far better served by making an effort to collaborate with their partner to reach a solution. Mediation can be beneficial for many couples, and it is well worth the time and effort to try this approach. At the end of the day, very few divorce settlements are reached by taking a hard line negotiation stance.
hlntv.com, “The 5 biggest mistakes people make when divorcing”, Randy Kessler, Oct. 22, 2015