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What is negotiation?

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What is negotiation?
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National Self-Represented Litigants Project (NSRLP)

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What is negotiation?
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Reviewed: 
July 31, 2017
Answer

Negotiation means trying to make an agreement with your partner by talking about your legal issues.

There are different ways that you can negotiate. For example, you and your partner can:

  • meet in person
  • talk over the phone
  • write letters or emails

You and your partner can discuss things by yourselves or with the help of or someone you both trust. You could also discuss things with the help of a mediator.

You don't need to have a lawyer to negotiate. But it's a good idea for each partner to hire their own lawyer.

A lawyer can help you negotiate an agreement by telling you what the law says you might be able to get. Only a lawyer can give you independent legal advice.

You tell your lawyer what you will agree to. And then your lawyer, for example, writes letters to your partner or your partner's lawyer if they have a lawyer.

Sometimes negotiation is called "informal" because you don't need to follow any special rules. You can simply discuss your issues and agree on things. If you and your partner agree, you should put your agreement in writing in a separation agreement.

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