More than 80% of U.S. divorce attorneys say they've seen a rise in the number of cases in which lawyers use social media posts as a reason to question child custody, spousal support, and other contentious issues.
Increasingly, courts also are examining Facebook for evidence. In September of 2011, a Connecticut judge ordered the attorneys for Stephen and Courtney Gallion to exchange "their client's Facebook and dating website passwords."
Facebook: Where Friends Can Become Lovers
When people tire of Match.com or don't find success in using Eharmony, they may shift to Facebook for "social dating." A rising number of people use Facebook to reignite friendships with high school and college flames, and take the relationships further than they'd intended.
Some predict that Facebook's new Graph Search - a search engine capability similar to Google that will soon be released - will make it even easier for former college flames to hook up. For example, when Graph Search is released you'll be able to search for single friends of your best friend and find new people to "friend" and date.
Of course, suspicious spouses also use Facebook to find evidence of flirting and affairs.
In cases where spouses still live together and share the same computer, a number of monitoring devices can be downloaded to monitor another person's Web use, such as SpectorPro, which monitors keystrokes, screenshots and a variety of social media networks.
6 Social Media Tips to Adopt During Your Divorce
It would be best to refrain from posting any information about yourself during your divorce. If you can't bear the thought of a separation from your Facebook friends, consider following these tips.
- Remember that once you post information about yourself online, it will remain there. Before you post, ask yourself, "Would a prospective employer hire me if he were to see this?" Or, "Will my ex-husband use this as evidence in our custody battle?"
- Keep your passwords private. Do not share your passwords with friends or family members. If your spouse previously had access to your passwords, change them.
- Don't allow your Facebook friends to post information about you on your Timeline.
- Ask your friends not to post any pictures of your while your divorce case is active.
- Do you use a geolocation application such as Foursquare? Or, do you post your locations when you write a status update on Facebook? Refrain from doing this during your divorce especially if your location is a bar or if your spouse has previously been abusive to you.
- Don't post your feelings about your divorce or your ex-spouse on Facebook. It's actually not wise to post anything on Facebook when you are emotionally upset
Do you have questions about your divorce, children's issues, custody, guardianships, or spousal support? If so, call me or schedule a consultation with the Law Offices of James V. Sansone at 707-623-1875 or contact me by email. You can find additional information on family law, children's issues, spousal support, domestic violence as well as a list of resources you'll find helpful on our website.