How to Negotiate Spousal Support in 10 Steps


Nobody gets married expecting it to end in divorce. But the unfortunate truth is that around 50% of all marriages in the United States end in divorce. And when they do, one of the key issues that must be negotiated is spousal support.

Spousal support can be a contentious issue during a divorce, but there are things you can do to help make the process a little smoother.

1. Have Realistic Expectations

One of the biggest mistakes people make when it comes to alimony is having unrealistic expectations.

Just because you think you deserve a certain amount doesn’t mean you will get it. The first step in any negotiation is to have realistic expectations about what you’re likely to achieve.

2. Know Your State’s Laws

Each state has its own laws governing alimony, so it’s important that you know what those laws are before you begin negotiations.

Familiarizing yourself with your state’s laws will give you a better idea of what you can realistically expect to receive.

3. Gather Financial Documentation

Before you begin negotiations, gather all of the financial documentation that will be relevant to the discussion, including tax returns, pay stubs, and bank statements.

This documentation will help you and your attorney determines what an appropriate level of support would be.

4. Consider Mediation

If you and your spouse are having trouble coming to an agreement on spousal support, consider mediation.

Mediation is a dispute resolution process in which a neutral third party helps parties reach an agreement through facilitated discussion.5.

5. Keep Emotions Out of It

Emotions can cloud your judgment and make it difficult to negotiate in a rational manner.

It’s important to keep your emotions in check and focus on coming to an agreement that makes sense for both parties involved.

6. Be Prepared to Compromise

Compromise is an important part of any negotiation. You may not get everything you want, but if both parties are willing to compromise, then it’s more likely that an agreement can be reached.

7. Have a Backup Plan

It’s always good to have a backup plan in case negotiations break down and an agreement cannot be reached.

If this happens, then you need to be prepared to take your case to court and let a judge decide how much spousal support should be paid.

8. Be Flexible

Flexibility is key when it comes time to negotiate alimony payments. You may need to be willing to negotiate on other aspects of your divorce in order to realize terms that are acceptable for both parties involved.

9. Get Professional Help

When it comes to terms for your divorce settlement, it’s important to be sure that you have professional help from an experienced attorney or mediator.

This will ensure that your rights are protected and that you’re getting the best possible outcome for your situation.

10. Think Long-Term

When you’re negotiating, it’s important to put aside any short-term thinking and consider what’s best for both parties long-term.

What might seem like a good deal now could actually be detrimental down the road, so it’s important to negotiate with this thought in mind.


Spousal support can be a contentious issue during a divorce, but there are things you can do to help make the process run more smoothly.

These tips will help you better understand how to navigate these waters and come to reasonable terms that work best for everyone involved.

Click here if you need help negotiating your alimony payments!


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