We investigated the “need to negotiate” in a comparative case study of multi-agency negotiations in the FERC licensing process. Researchers interviewed participants in two cases involving environmental consultations and asked about parties' level of need to negotiate throughout the process. Participants identified a need to negotiate, and when this need was strongly felt, there was an increased opportunity for an agreement to be reached. An intense need to negotiate by all parties is not a prerequisite to successful agreements. When key participants have a strong need to negotiate, they can instigate negotiations and encourage the involvement of other parties.