As the popularity of social media continues to grow, our staff of Atlanta divorce attorneys see things that come out on social media which have an impact in their divorce cases. We usually advise our clients to use caution on social media during a divorce because everything on social media may be discoverable. To give you some ideas about what can be found and used against you, these are 3 things that social media can reveal to damage your divorce case:
- Questionable Parenting – Sometimes, parents use social media to teach their children a lesson. This article highlights how parents took to social media to shame their children. It created controversy about parenting and what some feel is a private matter that should be handled quietly at home. Although it may be your parenting style to talk about how you busted and punished your child on social media, certain judges might see it as abusive. Oversharing is another problem that can arise for people; not only in their own life, but also in the lives of their children. Posting embarrassing photos, personal information and generally eliminating any privacy for the child can become an issue in a divorce case.
- Affairs – People who post photos and videos of them with a person that they might be dating can be damaging. A court may respond negatively to a person who “flaunts” their new relationship on social media. In addition, documenting a relationship through social media can be used in court to deny spousal support or to demonstrate character (or lack thereof). Your best bet: keep your romantic life off of social media.
- Lifestyle – Some lawyers have used the pages a person likes, such as a drug legalization group, to support arguments against someone’s character before a judge. They can also use photos, videos, comments on other people’s pages/blogs and other digital footprints to build or bolster a case against you. Checking in at the Cheetah Lounge at 3am when you are supposed to be at home with the kids may speak volumes to a judge when it comes time to prove that you should not get custody of your children.
Deactivating your social media may be the safest route when it comes to protecting yourself in your divorce case. If you must use social media, do not assume your ex can’t see it due to your privacy settings. Do assume that your spouse and the judge can and will see everything you post. If you keep this in mind, it will help you make good choices about what you should and should not post during your divorce.