The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

Yorkville Office By Appointment

Initial Consultations via ZOOM Available

Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in social media and divorce

b2ap3_thumbnail_Aurora-divorce-attorney.jpg-min.jpgSocial media is a large part of many people’s everyday lives. With the invention of platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, it has become easier than ever to keep in touch with the people you care about and connect with new people all over the world. Although social media has its perks, it can also be a nuisance in some people’s lives, especially in delicate situations such as divorce. During your divorce, how you use social media can make or break you. You do not necessarily have to stop using social media completely during your divorce, but you should be very aware of what you post online. Here are a few social media mistakes that you should avoid making at all costs during your divorce:

Do Not Reveal Too Much About Your Life

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to overshare on social media. During a divorce, there are several things that you and your spouse must agree upon, including property division, spousal support, and parenting time. These things can all be negatively impacted if you share contradicting or concerning information on social media during divorce negotiations.

For example, if you claim you need spousal support to survive after your divorce, but you are posting photos of you taking lavish vacations or buying expensive items, your claim could be questioned in court. Posting photos showing you performing illegal or inappropriate acts could cause the court to question your fitness as a parent or could serve as evidence that your spouse could use against you.

...

DuPage County divorce lawyerSocial media has been one of the defining topics of the 20th century. According to Hootsuite, a social media management platform, there were nearly 3.5 billion people around the world actively using social media at the beginning of 2019. With so many people connected on the Internet through websites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat, people are sharing their personal lives with each other more than ever before. While this can be a good thing, it can be detrimental if you are going through a divorce. Sharing parts of your personal life online can create evidence that can be used against you that can affect the outcome of issues such as spousal maintenance, property division, and even child-centered issues such as parenting time and decision-making responsibilities.

Using Social Media Posts in Your Favor

Social media is easy to use, which allows people to post photos and comments without having to think too much about what they are doing. In some situations, these kinds of posts can leave clues for the other spouse about issues such as hidden assets or whether or not the ex-spouse has a true need for spousal maintenance. For example, your ex might be petitioning to receive spousal maintenance due to claims he or she will not be able to enjoy the same standard of living that was enjoyed during the marriage. However, if he or she posts photos of a vacation with friends, you may be able to use those posts as evidence that he or she was not being completely honest about his or her financial situation.

Social Media as Evidence in Court

In the state of Illinois, using information obtained from social media is a legitimate form of evidence. This means that anything you or your spouse post on social media could be used against you in court, as long as the information was not obtained illegally or fraudulently. You cannot open fake social media accounts with the intention of posing as another person to gain information. You also cannot “hack” into your spouse’s account with the intention of gaining information. As a general rule of thumb, if the information you are using was posted publicly and available to users with an account, it is typically admissible as evidence in court.

...
Illinois child support attorney, Illinois family law attorney, Illinois divorce lawyer,There is no denying that going through a divorce can be a very trying time in life. Many people benefit from discussing their feelings with friends or a mental health professional. However, the growth in popularity of social media has led to an increase in the use of online postings as a way to vent about their spouse and relieve frustration.

Some Social Media Don’ts

While airing your feelings and frustrations about your divorce or your soon-to-be-ex may feel liberating, it can result in negative consequences. Consider these tips and strategies for social media use prior to, during and after a divorce to avoid causing yourself or others further harm.
  • Do not jump the gun. Changing your “relationship status” too early in the process can take your partner by surprise, especially if the possibility of a divorce was never previously discussed. It might also give your spouse the chance to hide assets or do other things that could hinder your opportunity for an equitable divorce decree.
  • Posting negative comments about your spouse may result in mutual friends feeling like they have to choose sides. It can also have the effect of portraying you as spiteful and petty.
  • Some social media users are notorious for oversharing. The intimate and personal details of your marriage and pending divorce should remain just that, personal.
  • Statements or images on social media that you make public could be used against you in a custody hearing.
  • Avoid the temptation to spy on your spouse by “stalking” them on social media. This often has the ability to anger and frustrate the one doing the snooping. Even when the divorce is final, it can be hard to move on if you continue to visit your ex’s Facebook account.
  • Blocking your ex from all your accounts can appear just as petty. Unless you feel that person is using the information you post for vengeful purposes, sometimes taking the high road can feel pretty good. However, there are ways to limit access without completing blocking another user.

Rely on the Professional Services of a Knowledgeable Aurora Divorce Lawyer

To prevent yourself from allowing emotions to blur the level-headed and logical pursuit of a divorce, hiring a knowledgeable DuPage County divorce lawyer with years of successful experience can ensure you follow proper protocols and legal channels. The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C. provides advice and guidance based on years of experience and help from knowledgeable resources to pursue an equitable divorce decree. Contact our offices at 630-409-8184 to set up a consultation.

...

How your Social Media Practices Can Damage your Child Custody Case, family law, divorce, child custody, social media, aurora child custody lawyersOn May 3, 2017, YouTube stars Michael and Heather Martin lost custody of their two children as a result of a video they posted on YouTube. In the video, Michael and Heather Martin spilled invisible ink on the carpet in one of the children’s rooms. They then blamed their children for ruining the carpet, and the children cried as their parents yelled and cursed at them. Finally, Heather and Michael Martin laughed and told their children it was a prank. As seen in the video, the children were not amused.

The video of the prank went viral and prompted the creation of an online petition calling on Child Protective Services (C.P.S.) to remove the children from Michael and Heather Martin’s home. C.P.S. took the children in and Rose Hall, the children’s biological mother, was granted emergency custody.

This situation highlights the impact social media can have in situations like child custody. Your use of social media should be even more stringent if you are going through a child custody battle. Electronic evidence in the form of social media posts and pictures can be used in court if the evidence meets a certain criterion.

...

Aurora family law attorney, divorce rates, divorce trends, social media, social media and divorce, social network sites, human behavior, social media behaviorIs the overuse of social media, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, a predictor of marital dissatisfaction and divorce? A new Boston University study by James Katz, Feld Family Professor of Emerging Media Studies, found a correlation between using social network sites, spousal issues, and the divorce rate. In fact, the argument behind the study shows a strong connection between online behavior, human behavior, and divorce. And as social media use becomes more widespread across the country, it is likely that researchers will continue to explore the connection between relationships and social media.

To begin, the study reviewed married couples across 43 states between 2008-2010, and it looked at Facebook’s effect by dividing the number of account users in each state by the total population. It was found that a 20 percent increase in Facebook users generated a two percent increase in divorce rate.

The researchers also examined a study from the University of Texas at Austin. The 2011 research had polled 1,200 married individuals between the ages of 18 and 39 regarding the romantic quality of their marriage. Non-users of social media reported themselves as 11 percent happier than heavy users, and only half as likely to consider leaving their spouse.

...
The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn
Back to Top