Social media has changed the way most people do anything these days, from interacting with friends and loved ones to shopping to marketing. According to The National Law Review, it has even changed the way people go through divorce, and is even responsible for spurring divorce.
According to the journal, social media use is directly correlated with reduced marriage quality and happiness. It is also positively correlated with troubled relationships and couples talking about divorce. When it does lead to divorce, attorneys often turn to social profiles. Because of this, you should think twice about what you post.
Social media evidence in divorce
When going through your divorce, bear in mind that as many as 81% of attorneys use social networking evidence to bolster their clients’ cases. In 66% of cases, Facebook is the primary source of damning evidence. Furthermore, social media activities trigger one-third of all legal action that occurs in divorce cases.
Why do so many attorneys use social media, though? There are several reasons. According to the publication, social media posts can highlight a person’s character, which may serve as strong evidence in child custody cases. Certain photos and posts can also reveal hidden assets, such as vacation homes, luxury vehicles and boats. These types of photos can help during the property division phase, or when it comes time to award alimony. They can even harm one party’s case if they reveal that said party lied during oral testimony.
When social media is admissible as evidence
Social media posts are almost always admissible as evidence. This is because most posts and photos are made public, which means anyone with an account (or, on some platforms, anyone, period) can view and inspect them. If you make a post private and viewable only by your friends, your spouse’s attorney can still access it in various ways. One such way would be if a friend shared your post.
The only times when social media becomes inadmissible as evidence is when the other party procures it illegally. Illegal procurement might occur if your spouse or attorney open a fake account for the sole purpose of gaining access to your feed, or if your spouse hacks your account.