Divorce is not just a legal document that dissolves a marriage. It is a highly emotional, personal and intimate event in the life of a family. Those with children experience the emotional gravity of divorce even more intensely.
For many, social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok serve as a message board to family and friends and as a documentary journal. For some, these platforms have therapeutic value: a means to stay connected in a pandemic-altered world.
The incendiary combination of divorce and social media can, however, lead to very bad outcomes for your case.
Here is the list of what [not] to do:
1) Announce your divorce on social media
For those that frame their divorce as a coming-out party, social media provides a venue that is only a few clicks away. It has the benefit of not having to repeat the same sob story over and over again to each and every person. It also has the drawback of causing significant upset to your ex-spouse and children and making you look like you are gloating. An upset ex-spouse usually does not make concessions in a divorce settlement and judges frown upon arrogance. Wait until your divorce settlement is finalized before turning to social media.
2) Post lots of pics with location tagging
Photographs on social media are more popular than words. It is very common to post pics of outings with family and friends. If the actual photograph does not openly reveal your whereabouts, the metadata contained in the digital file can reveal the location and time stamp of the pic. This information can then be used by your spouse or your spouse’s lawyer to track your whereabouts and ascertain if you are being truthful.
This is particularly important if your case involves custody, access, and parenting issues. The other parent can investigate whether you are out with friends while you are supposed to be at home caring for the children. It is preferable to not give such intel to your ex-spouse, and so you should avoid posting pics after separation.
3) Share plenty of personal information
Social media is often used as a real-time account of one’s personal life. This includes social plans, travel, new connections and journaling. Such information can reveal private struggles, experiences and resolutions – the very information that may be used against you by your former spouse or their lawyer in a divorce case.
Think twice about what you post during a divorce, as it can become evidence against you later. Sharing your opinion of your ex-spouse, criticizing them on social media or posting photos of a vacation with someone else can create trouble.
4) Post pics of your travel and luxury spending
Any post that reveals your spending, income or wealth can be evidence in a divorce case and – perhaps shockingly – may be a decisive factor in deciding parenting rights, support or property division. Likewise, announcing a new relationship on social media or posting pics with friends drinking or smoking can be damaging. So think twice about posting photographs of yourself driving a flashy new sports car, with your new partner and wearing expensive clothing on your way to the airport for an exotic and romantic getaway while your ex-spouse is at home with the children.
5) Delete your old posts and pics
Although deleting compromising pics of you on your social media page may seem smart in a divorce case, it can be looked upon as concealing or destroying inculpatory evidence. There are considerations on both sides. This is one topic that will require bespoke legal advice from your lawyer to navigate you through the pros and cons.
While social media posts may not seem relevant to your divorce, they can be injurious to your case and lead to unwanted outcomes. Also, they can affect your ex-spouse mentally and emotionally – which will impact your lawyer’s ability to negotiate a fair divorce settlement. Your lawyer can advise you as to whether your post may prove problematic.
At Benmor Family Law Group, our multi-disciplinary team of divorce experts fully understands the emotional and financial impact of divorce. That’s why we treat our clients the way we would want to be treated. Whether we help you through separation, divorce, mediation, divorce coaching, or parenting coordination, our full-service family law firm expertly supports you, guides you, and represents you – throughout your case.Share this article on: