This is the third post in a three part series in which I highlight positive outcomes for cases that I’ve handled over the years and what you can learn from them. This is not a representation of the outcome in your particular case, but rather an explanation of what happened in these specific cases:
In a recent Family Law case, it became apparent that the judge was inclined to grant the opposing party a continuance to gather more evidence. This would mean putting my client through the expense of a contested hearing.
Both sides reviewed the mediator’s report, then I negotiated with the other parent to see if a mutual agreement could be reached now that both sides knew what the mediator had recommended. During negotiations, the other parent indicated that they wanted to end things that day. Knowing this, and sensing that they were concocting allegations with no evidence to back them up, I called their bluff and requested that the judge state reasons for ordering a contested hearing when neither side had requested one.
When the other parent confirmed that they had no additional evidence, the court had no choice but to render its decision immediately based only on the evidence we had presented. Our evidence, specifically designed to disprove the accusations the other parent had concocted without proof, led to a favorable outcome.
Talking to my client to learn about the other party’s tendencies, asking questions designed to elicit information from the other parent, and relying on good instincts, can make the difference between “short and sweet,” or long, drawn-out, expensive litigation. This was a case of taking a calculated risk, but experience, paying attention, and knowing how to read people made the difference.
Negotiations are more than just giving in or giving something up. Often, you can learn things that help while still in the fight. Negotiate when you can, and fight only when you must. But if you must fight, let us fight for you.