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Can social media be used as evidence during a divorce?

On Behalf of | Jan 21, 2020 | Firm News |

Social media allows people all over the world to remain connected. It can also make divorce much more complicated in some cases. Posts made on popular social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter can be used as evidence during divorce hearings, and in some cases may be integral to decisions made by the judge. The National Law Review offers the following information on social media’s impact on modern divorces.

There are numerous aspects of a divorce that must be decided on in court. For instance, parents must request the judge make a determination about child custody. Other determinations will also be made about asset division and alimony. In many case cases, these decisions are backed by information found on social media. This is especially true when it comes to the conduct of each person, their respective lifestyle and standard of living.

Statistical data also points to how valuable social media postings can be during divorce proceedings. One study conducted found that 81% of attorneys find something on the opposing spouse’s social media that would be worthwhile for the court to see. Additionally, 66% of divorces utilized Facebook as a primary source of evidence for the proceedings. Research also shows that social media is often a factor in the lead up to divorce for many couples. Online affairs are cited in one-third of all divorces. Studies have also pointed out a negative link between social media use and happiness within a marriage.

While laws can differ from state to state, it’s best to take a cautious approach with social media when going through a divorce. Although certain information is usually admissible, you’re not permitted to access posts in fraudulent ways, such as by creating a false account. In terms of posting, try not to talk about your divorce while it’s ongoing. It’s also recommended that you make your profile private so you don’t have to worry about information falling into the wrong hands.