Facebook and Family Law Statistics Are In
- February 5, 2014
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Most people overlook the old adage ‘a picture tells 1,000 words’ including how much alimony you can afford, what kind of people your kids will be around when they’re with you, whether you may be cheating on a spouse or partner and many other facts you may be unwittingly disclosing for your spouse to use in a contested divorce. Facebook has made it so easy to meet new people and also find out what your spouse is doing that the social media site is responsible for 20% of all divorces in the United States. Computers leave trails for spouses and former spouses to find out about indiscretions and other information simply by turning on the computer, plugging an entry into a Google search or filling in information when autofill takes over and inserts your “other email address.” The next time you wonder why your former spouse or partner is filing another motion for more alimony just think of all the pictures of your well-appointed home, your elaborate vacations and your new car that you have posted on Instagram while claiming you only make $30,000 per year. In our law practice, we used to be provided with printouts of emails then cell phone texts but now we are routinely provided printed pages from Facebook and Instagram for divorce, criminal and even business matters. With the aid of social media every citizen with a computer or smart phone is a private investigator. Even deleted messages can be recovered with the right amount of time and energy or, in the case of a high net worth divorce where someone liquidated substantial marital funds, a subpoena. Maybe you are wondering “how could someone be so careless as to post something incriminating on Instagram?” Follow that thought with the memory of the last time you laughed as you opened an email where a friend had tagged you in a picture they or someone else posted. Even if you delete your entire Facebook account you may have already deleted your marriage, child custody, overnight visitation or bank account if you have posted or been posted online. If you are facing alimony, divorce, custody, visitation, parenting time, child support or other issues as a result of social media you should obtain experienced legal counsel immediately in order to limit any damage that you may be exposed to. For more information regarding family law matters in New Jersey visit HeatherDarlingLawyer.com. This blog is for informational purposes and not intended to replace the advice of legal counsel.