How Do You Know What Is “Fair” in a Divorce? 

As you prepare or begin your divorce, you’ve probably heard quite a bit about what is “fair” in a divorce. Everyone wants to be treated fairly in divorce proceedings, but it can be difficult to pinpoint what is fair when you are working on your settlement. Fairness is a relative concept and what is “fair” to one person can feel unfair to another. While fairness will differ for everyone, you can take some steps to help ensure you are getting a fair deal in your divorce settlement.

Work with an Attorney

Part of knowing what is fair is understanding what the laws are and what you are actually entitled to. This is where a New Mexico divorce lawyer is very helpful as they can explain the ins and outs of the laws applicable in your case and tell you what to expect based on their knowledge and experience. When you are more informed going into the divorce process, you will have a better overall experience.

It’s important to note that your attorney can provide you with a realistic idea of what may happen in your case and what is possible versus what is unlikely. This way, you do not waste time negotiating from a position that is not realistic. Sometimes, a person who is getting divorced may stall negotiations because they are trying to get everything, but that is not how divorce in New Mexico works and can lead to a costly divorce trial and outcome that is not favorable. When you work with an attorney for your divorce, you can avoid costly missteps and receive advice and guidance throughout your case. Your attorney will help you ensure your settlement is as fair as possible.

Balance Your Interests

Throughout your divorce, you have to strike a balance between two main interests. As you consider what is fair and what is not, keep in mind your goal of a result that is favorable to you and your desire to avoid a bitter, messy and drawn-out divorce.

It’s entirely possible to save effort, time and money and get your needs met without having to be a pushover. You can get yourself set up for the next chapter of your life without having a drawn-out court battle that costs you thousands in legal fees. However, you will need to balance getting what you really need and compromise on what is less important to you at the same time. This means you cannot have it all, and insisting on what is only fair to you, or getting every single thing you want, will delay your divorce and may result in a court ruling less favorable to you.

Get in Line with Your Spouse

As impossible as it may sound to some couples, it’s worth it to try to work with your spouse to come to an agreement. When you are both able to define what is fair to you and meet somewhere in the middle, it will make for a better and more permanent result. In addition, it will save you a considerable amount of money and give you more control over the outcome of your divorce than you would have if you needed to have the judge decide.

Of course, you and your spouse may not agree about what is fair and you may not be able to negotiate with each other directly, but you don’t need to try to do this on your own. Your respective attorneys can assist with everything from property division to child custody in Santa Fe, New Mexico. You may also do well in mediation or settlement facilitation, which are sessions with you and your spouse and a third-party mediator who is there to help you settle issues and reach an agreement. Both you and your spouse can have your own attorneys for this process so you have access to legal advice; the mediator cannot provide that.