By: Stan Sarkisov
“The past decade has also seen the advent and ascendency of social media, with websites such as Facebook and Twitter occupying a central place in the lives of so many people.”
– NY Supreme Court, ruling that spouses can be served divorce papers via Facebook (Baidoo v. Blood-Dzraku)
Your ‘friends’ and ‘followers’ aren’t the only ones paying attention to your social media—so are judges, attorneys, and well, likely your ex and his or her community. During the divorce process, it may feel like anything you say and do (or post, or Tweet, or the like) can be used against you. That is because it can. Imagine everything you write admitted into court as evidence.
When it comes to social media and divorce, here are the Dos and Don’ts:
- Set all of your accounts to private (and don’t accept invites from people you do not personally know).
- Review past posts, and delete questionable posts before your divorce is filed.
- Block potential witnesses.
- Edit down your contacts and “friend’s list.”
- Disparage the other party, or the other party’s family members.
- Do not vent about your relationship online.
- Flaunt your wealth/purchases/trips (it is evidence of your ability to provide support or may show a lack of “need” for support).
- Flaunt your career (your LinkedIn can be evidence of your ability to earn and pay support).
- Flaunt your new relationship.
- Disrespect your children’s privacy, or use the kids as part of your PR campaign.
- Set up a dating profile.
If you can’t refrain, then deactivate. Text messages, emails, and social media is a pool of evidence. Do not make your ex’s job easier—stop posting. Finally, if you have minor children, child custody issues may resurface post-divorce. As such, continue to proceed with discretion. Taking some precautions may help you to avoid litigation and/or parenting disputes in the future.