Watch out what you post!
Social media has become a huge part our daily lives. We love connecting with others on websites and apps and exchanging information, pictures, gossip, rumors and newsworthy information as well.
But always remember this: social media can have a big impact in your child custody case. The things you post could negatively affect your case. So watch out! Even posts that seem harmless can be misconstrued and could put your case at a disadvantage or in a very bad light with the judge.
Always be mindful of what you post as it could come back to haunt you later. The best rule of thumb is to avoid social media during your divorce. We've seen people make innocuous posts that have been horribly misconstrued and we've seen the sharing of pictures, even seemingly innocent ones, make a difference in a custody case. We've seen pictures where alcoholic beverages are visible and even where marijuana and cocaine and drug paraphernalia appear to be in the background of the photo. We've seen people post pictures where people are obviously under the influence, where nudity is involved, and where weapons are displayed in a threatening manner or even alongside young children.
Attorneys want to see what you've shared
Attorneys now routinely request digital downloads of each party's social media accounts and use it as evidence at trial. They will be able to review posts, question you about the posts, and attempt to use your words against you. This includes platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, WhatsApp, Tinder, Bumble, Ashley Madison, Seeking Arrangement, Match.com, etc. The attorneys could also share the posts with guardian ad litems to attempt to influence or sway their opinions. And depending on what is written or what the pictures show, it could certainly have an impact.
Think before posting
Here are 5 things to consider before posting:
- How will others view this post?
- Do we have mutual friends that may screenshot & send to the other party?
- Is this picture really necessary to post?
- Is this post disparaging the other party?
- What would the judge or guardian ad litem think about this post?
You may have already posted things that could affect you; however, once you know litigation is on the horizon or it's already started, it's best to keep a low profile. It's best to not discuss the case on a public platform and limit communications with others regarding the matter. Set your security settings to private. It may even be a good idea to disable your accounts while the child custody case is pending to remove the temptation to post.
When you need to speak with a divorce or family law attorney who actually cares, we're here for you at 678-215-4106!