Reminders to use social media constantly surround you. The world repeatedly tells you to tweet about this, take a Snapchat of that and “like” things on Facebook. It feels like you can’t escape the pressure to share your life online.
It is not surprising, then, that social media is also relevant when you get a divorce. If you are separating from your spouse, you should know how the Internet factors into the process.
The online world is a common cause of divorce
Social media continues to grow as a reason people file for divorce. When you have access to the entire world right in your pocket, it’s easy to see why. Constant distractions from the real world might lead to you and your spouse growing apart.
It isn’t just being too focused on Instagram photos that causes marital problems—it is also easier than ever for people to cheat on their spouse. One third of divorce cases start because of online affairs.
Internet activity may hurt your case
Everything you do online can potentially be used as evidence in your divorce. 81% of lawyers report that they find evidence on social networks. Your spouse’s attorney may try to use your social media posts to:
- Show that you aren’t a good parent
- Reveal assets you were hiding
- Catch you in a lie using photos or location data
- Accuse you of infidelity
You may know that any of these allegations would be false—but the court doesn’t. Even if the other side is taking your posts out of context, your online behavior could still influence the judge’s decision on child support and division of assets. Keeping things private and considering how your posts could impact your case might help you get what you want.
Using Facebook or Instagram should come with a warning that you frequently hear on crime shows: “Anything you say can and will be used against you.” You do not necessarily have to delete all of your social media apps—but you should be careful about what you post. Keeping your divorce and your online life separate might improve the outcome of your case.