With over 80 percent of the United States population actively maintaining a social media presence, it is now becoming exceedingly common for social media to influence the outcome of divorces. Depending on what you post, the judge can take these findings into account as they decide your financial future and your child custody situation. Thus, it is critical that you change your passwords and ensure that you are keeping your profile private and only sharing with known friends. If at all possible, it is best to refrain from posting on social media platforms until the divorce proceedings are finalized. It can also be valuable to speak with an experienced South Carolina divorce attorney to find out what you should and should not do on social media during a divorce
Social Media Can Serve as Evidence
In accordance with South Carolina divorce statutes, there are various pieces of evidence that can be gathered based on your social media posts. In many circumstances, you can unknowingly compromise your case based on seemingly benign posts. The following are some of the most common issues that can arise from social media during a divorce:
- Unreported Income. During your divorce proceedings, you must complete a Financial Declaration, which details your financial standing and your income levels. In the event that you have completed the documentation to suggest that you do not have great financial means, but your social media posts suggest big spending, you may have an issue. This can diminish your credibility and cause the judge to side with your spouse. Alternatively, if you are able to review your spouse’s social media and find evidence of unreported income, this can serve as an advantage as proceedings progress.
- Parental Issues. Depending on what you chose to share on social media, your posts can be used to show a lack of parental ability. For instance, if your social media account portrays that you are living a “wild” lifestyle away from your children, then the judge may use this as evidence against you when determining child custody. Likewise, if your posts indicate that you are always with the children and the other parent is absent, this may work in your favor as you seek custody of your children.
- Potential Cheating. Social media posts and behavior can serve as an indicator of cheating or potential adulterous behavior. Thus, it is in your best interest to refrain from posting about any relationship or behavior outside of the marriage. This is the case even if the new relationship began after you were separated from your spouse. A new relationship can be spun against you and it can be argued that the relationship began when you were married.
- Your Account is NOT Secure. Regardless of how secure you believe your social media accounts are, it is important to remember that they are not. Accounts can be hacked, and it is nearly impossible to control who views your posts/tweets no matter how secure you perceive your security settings to be. As previously mentioned, if at all possible, refrain from any social media usage during a divorce.
Get Help Today
Going through a divorce can be one of the most difficult things you go through in life. While this period will be a struggle, it is important to remember that you are not alone. A knowledgeable South Carolina family law attorney can stand by your side as your divorce progresses. At McCoy & Stokes, our dedicated team of divorce attorneys understands what you are going through, and we are prepared to aggressively advocate on your behalf.
Contact us today for assistance with your case.