Social Media and Divorce: Why Facebook is NEVER a Good Idea!
There’s a lot of factors that come into play when filing a complaint for divorce. You think of the kids, the properties, and how you can continue to have a healthy relationship with someone you had loved. However, another thing that you should take into consideration during a divorce is social media.
Believe it or not, it is not enough that you stay away from unnecessary communication with your spouse. You should also unglue yourself from social media until the divorce is settled for good.
Social Media and its Impact on Relationships and Marriage
Social media is one of the causes of an unhappy marriage. Spouses that turn their focus on their phone screens seem to reduce or lessen feelings of intimacy with their romantic partners.
Social media is addicting, and an easy escape for individuals. A study shows that people turn to social media for support. Spouses tend to focus their attention on social media, especially during a marital problem because it is easy access to an immediate, yet temporary source of validation.
It is no surprise that constant access to these sites increases the chances of marital infidelity and jealousy. Social media is a haven for lawyers to gather data to attack an adverse party and protect their clients. According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, 81% of lawyers use social media as evidence in divorce cases. In these cases, 66% use Facebook as their source of evidence.
Privacy Settings is not enough to exclude your Accounts from Evidence
Whether or not you are a guilty spouse, you would probably argue that your social media accounts are private and cannot be a source of evidence. However, it is not as simple as that.
For instance, in the case of Romano vs. Steelcase Inc., the complainant filed a claim for personal damages against the defendant. The defendant argued that the claim of the complainant is inconsistent with her actual injuries, which prompted them to request from the court access to her social media sites. The Court granted the defendant’s prayer despite the complainant’s privacy settings because social networking sites are essentially a space to share information.
Furthermore, the information sought by the defendant was found by the court as necessary and relevant to its defense. Surprisingly, because of the access, the claims of the complainant was debunked. It revealed that the complainant, despite her so-called injuries, was actually living a pretty active lifestyle.
Because of this case and many others, it is quite impossible to conclude or predict that social media could ever be excluded from evidence by the mere ground of privacy.
How Social Media can Affect Your Interests Pending a Complaint for Divorce
One very common scenario in divorce cases is when one of the party was alleged to be unfaithful to the other. Both are in actuality unfaithful, but the non-filing spouse appears to be more open about his extra-marital affair. While both are in fact unfaithful, because the filing spouse does not post any of his/her romantic interest on social media sites like Facebook, the relationship remains undetectable making it possible for the court to consider a higher alimony for the infidelity in favor of the filing party.
Another is when one spouse lies about his financial situation, when in fact he/she spends most of it on buying luxury items and posting them on social media. This information can be used as evidence for child support.
Social media may also be misconstrued and manipulated depending on who is looking. What you post, who you post and where, can and could potentially affect conjugal property separation and dissolution, and even child custody!
One post can potentially impact your position on the divorce. The best that you can do is stay away from social networking during your divorce process.
Law Firm for Divorce Cases
If you want a law firm that has the experience, contact the Clark Law Office. The Clark Law Office is equipped with highly skilled and passionate lawyers who will help you through your divorce process. Every member of our team is knowledgeable and trained to handle the most difficult of cases to the best interest of our client.
For something as crucial, and sensitive as divorce, don’t leave your personal affairs to the inexperienced. Call the Lansing divorce attorneys at The Clark Law Office today!