When you’re going through a divorce, you need friends. Real friends. People you actually know and who know you. Facebook friends? Not so much. While it’s tempting to update your status in a bid to soldier through feelings of loneliness and anger, nothing good can come from it.
The chances are better than average that you and your soon-to-be ex share mutual friends on Facebook. The chances are equally good that at least a portion of those mutual friends are spying on you, and will think nothing of taking screenshots of your posts and reporting back to your ex.
According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, over 80 percent of the country’s top divorce attorneys have attested to a sharp increase in cases that involve evidence found through social media.
Another study, this time by the UK-based Slater and Gordon, found that for one in seven participants, social media played a prominent role in them even considering to initiate divorce proceedings in the first place.
Trust No One
While your divorce case is proceeding, you should look at practically everyone with distrustful eyes. Both you and your ex are trying to position yourselves for the best possible deal you can get, because once the judge issues the final ruling in your case, it can be laborious – and expensive – to try to make changes.
Your social media channels – all of them, from Twitter and Facebook to Instagram and Pinterest – are treasure troves of information for your ex, her lawyer and friends to scrutinize. If you’re trying to limit your vulnerability to alimony or support, don’t post photographs of yourself on vacation or dining at an upscale restaurant.
Here are some other tips concerning use of social media during your divorce proceedings:
- As tempting as it may be – and trust us, we understand – it’s never a good idea to disparage your soon-to-be ex online. Those comments make you appear small and petty. Additionally, if what you say is untrue, you could be looking at a libel suit.
- Even if you know her password – and while we’re thinking of it, make sure you’ve changed all of yours – refrain from logging into any of her accounts. If you suspect there may be some evidence worth having in her accounts, your lawyer can obtain a court order to have a look. Otherwise, if you’re caught logging in without her knowledge or approval, you may be opening yourself up for a civil case.
Not knowing about the landmines of social media is but one of the abundant reasons you need an experienced attorney to guide you through the divorce process. Contact the knowledgeable attorneys at Men’s Legal Center. Our office is located in San Diego, California, but we proudly serve husbands, fathers and non-custodial parents in many surrounding areas.