Cipriano Law Offices, P.C.

Call 973-852-3346

You need room to compromise when strategizing for mediation

Negotiating the terms of your own divorce can be empowering, but it can also be complicated. Mediation is a great option for many couples in New Jersey. It allows you and your spouse to figure out how to split your assets and debts without turning over all the decisions to the courts.

Mediation can also allow you to move through the divorce process much more quickly and with less expense then you would experience in family court because you can file for an uncontested divorce. However, just like a standard divorce, there's a lot of strategy that should go into a mediation session. If you don't prepare yourself, you could find that you are not as happy with the end result as you otherwise might be.

Compromise is the main objective of mediation

Mediation is a process that seeks to help people reach a mutually agreeable compromise about issues that they currently do not agree on. Usually, that means sitting down with your individual attorneys and going back and forth to come up with a workable solution to splitting up the assets and debts from your marriage. It can also help establish the initial parenting plan, although the courts will need to approve this.

The important thing to remember in mediation is that you usually don't want to put your proverbial cards down on the table. There are likely assets or terms that are more important to you than others.

Be direct, but consider your end goal as part of a strategy

You can ask for it out right, but you may also want to consider inflating your initial offer somewhat. This provides you with wiggle room for when your spouse counters your initial offer.

In other words, you should consider adding a buffer to any offer you make during mediation negotiations. This way, you can meet your spouse in the middle without giving up on the things that matter the most to you.

Chances are good that your spouse will likely do the same, as this is the nature of negotiating. Prepare yourself for the back and forth. Negotiating toward success on the items and terms that matter the most to you can facilitate a much smoother mediation process for everyone involved.

Focus on the assets and terms that are most important to you

One trap people often fall into when negotiating is wanting to feel like they win across the board. This really isn't going to be an option in mediation, so start deciding now what matters the most to you in the divorce outcome. Are there certain works of art in your home that you are desperate to retain? Do you care more about protecting your interest in the vacation home that you own?

Whatever it is that matters to you, you have the option to fight for it and mediation. Unlike divorce in court, where the judge gets to pick who gets what, you can dig your heels in and really push for the particular assets and terms that have the most value and meaning for you.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  • Best Readers Choice Awards Of Essex | 2018
  • IACP | International Academy of Collaborative Professionals NAFLA | Top Ten Rating | 2014
  •  Super lawyer | Melissa Cipriano
  • Super lawyer | Top 100 | New Jersey
  • Super lawyer | Top 50 Women | New Jersey
  • 10 Best 2016 | Client Satisfaction | 10 Best Female Attorney
  • Avvo Rating 10.0 | Superb | Top Attorney Divorce Avvo | Client choice 2015 | Divorce

Melissa Cipriano: Honored as a "Best of New Jersey Among our Most Distinguished Americans of Italian Descent" and conferred the "Stivale D'Italia Award of Excellence" by the Italian Tribune for her "honesty, integrity and dedication to fair and ethical business practices" and her "outstanding reputation as a Woman Whose Word is Her Bond".

*See methodology for inclusion at the websites listed: Super Lawyers, NAFLA, AIOFLA, and AVVO. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.

Email Us For A Response

Contact Cipriano Law Offices, P.C.

To learn more about our Essex County divorce and family lawyers, you may email us or call 973-852-3346 to schedule an initial consultation.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

This site uses Google's Invisible reCAPTCHA, which is subject to Google's Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.


175 Fairfield Avenue
Suite 4C/D
West Caldwell, NJ 07006

Toll Free: 800-646-0731
Phone: 973-852-3346
Fax: 973-403-8610
West Caldwell Law Office Map

Make a Payment