Whether it’s Facebook or Twitter, social media has become an influential part of our lives. These platforms give users the opportunity to share their lives through photos, videos and status updates, connect with family and friends, and stay updated with the latest news.
However, it is possible that your social media activity can be used against you—especially when it comes to divorce. According to a study by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), over 80% of divorce lawyers have used posts on social media as evidence in divorce cases in recent times.
For instance, if one party shares pictures of lavish trips and expensive purchases online, despite being embroiled in a hotly contested dispute over property division, the other party may claim that their spouse is attempting to hide assets, which could also have an impact on alimony and child support. In regard to custody battles, those who post of getting intoxicated or a night out with friends—when they’re supposed to be supervising the children—can come back to haunt them. If one party starts dating during a divorce, posts about a new flame can spark jealousy and anger from the other spouse, which can result in a more costly and time-consuming divorce.
While many people have customized their privacy settings, many couples have mutual friends and acquaintances on social media. In the event of a divorce, these individuals may pick sides to the point of aiding investigations.
The following are social media tips when going through a divorce:
- Block your soon-to-be-ex-spouse and mutual contacts – To prevent your spouse from accessing your social media activity, block him/her and his/her friends, family, and peers who are sympathetic to your spouse.
- Change your passwords – If your spouse knows the passwords to all of your social media accounts and devices such as cell phones and computers, take the time to change all of them.
- Limit your activity on social media – During proceedings, it is best to avoid sharing anything on social media until you and your spouse have finalized the divorce. Do not voluntarily post evidence that your spouse can use against you.
- Tell your friends not to stop tagging you – From check-ins to geotags, this is another way your spouse can know about your whereabouts. Inform your friends to stop tagging you in posts until the divorce is over.