The Dynamics and Strategies of Negotiating an Agreement


One of the most important provisions of the equitable distribution law is DRL Sec. 236[B][3] which authorizes the parties to opt-out of a judicial determination of their property and support rights in favor of a settlement which they themselves fashion through a process of negotiation. DRL § 240(1-b)(h) permits the negotiated settlement of child support issues as well. Likewise, custody arrangements flow from negotiated agreements more often than they result from judicial determinations. It is well known that the vast majority of matrimonial and family law matters are settled without the need of significant judicial intervention and it is the rare case which must be tried to an adjudicated conclusion. This being the case, the matrimonial practitioner, to be successful, must be a skilled negotiator.

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Always an excellent update for attorneys in the matrimonial arena.

Kevin J. Reeves, Hopewell Junction

About The Authors


timTimothy Tippins Esq.

Timothy M. Tippins, Esq. is an adjunct professor at Albany Law School and serves on the faculty of the American Academy of Forensic Psychology and on the Affiliate Postdoctoral Forensic Faculty at St. John’s University. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor of Forensic Psychology at Siena College. He is a private practitioner who has engaged in matrimonial and family law practice since 1975 and devotes his practice exclusively to serving as trial counsel and consultant to other family law practitioners on a nationwide basis, with special emphasis on the presentation and cross-examination of expert mental health testimony. Tippins has served in all major professional leadership positions in the New York family law community, including President of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers – New York Chapter, Chair of the NYSBA Family Law Section, and Chair of the NYSBA Task Force on Family Law. Tippins is a regular feature columnist for the New York Law Journal and is the author of the multi-volume treatise New York Matrimonial Law & Practice (West Publishing).

Company Name: MatLaw Systems Corp.
E-mail: tmtippins@matlaw.com