The dangers of social media in divorce proceedings

On behalf of Lake Toback Attorneys

People going through a legal separation in Illinois may be interested in hearing some advice regarding what not to do when heading towards divorce. With social media being as popular as it is, many people may not think twice about posting their thoughts online. Yet no matter how private a user’s privacy settings may be, anything put online could manage to make its way into an individual’s divorce proceedings.

If the children of a divorce post something on their social media pages, this content may also come into play when it comes time to establish a child custody schedule. If there are pictures or statuses that indicate that a parent was being negligent on his or her watch, such as pictures of a teenage child with drug paraphernalia or alcohol, the parent who wants more custody of the child may introduce these pictures or status updates as proof in court.

Even if the only thing that one parent posts to a social media account is insults about another parent, a judge may look at whether the children have access to the parent’s posts. A judge will likely see it as damaging to the children if a parent is exposing them to defamatory language about the other parent. Another example of how posts may be used against a spouse is if one spouse is trying to get alimony but is posting pictures or status updates about taking an extravagant vacation. These posts may be used as evidence that the requesting spouse does not actually have a need for much alimony.

The attorneys advising parents and spouses to be wary of social media also warn divorcing spouses that deleting posts may have negative consequences as well, since this may be treated as hiding evidence. If Chicago residents have concerns about their social media activity and how it plays into their divorce proceedings, they may wish to consult an Illinois divorce attorney.

Source: The Huffington Post, “The Divorce Mistakes You Don’t Even Know You’re Making“, Taryn Hillin, March 18, 2014

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The dangers of social media in divorce proceedings