A recent survey by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) revealed that social networking sites have become a hot source for evidence. Over eighty percent of family law attorneys surveyed found that they have seen an increase in the amount of divorces using social networking evidence over the past five years. Facebook was found to be the biggest online source, followed by MySpace and Twitter.
Without thinking, many people have given clues about their infidelity, habits, and lifestyle on their Facebook profile. This can be in the form of public postings, chats, and most frequently through photos. Online activities can then be used as evidence during a divorce or custody battle .
It is recommended that anyone going through a divorce stay off social media sites. If the urge is too great, then make sure your privacy settings are set appropriately. In particular, people may have granted access to their page to friends or "friends of friends" who may be more aligned with the other spouse.
Individuals going through a contested divorce should also make sure none of their postings or pictures are contrary to any testimony they plan to give. Marlene Eskind Moses, President of the AAML explains, "Going through a divorce always results in heightened levels of personal scrutiny. If you publicly post any contradictions to previously made statements and promises, an estranged spouse will certainly be one of the first people to notice and make use of that evidence."
If you are contemplating divorce contact an experienced family law attorney. A lawyer can advise you about the use of social media, including how to protect yourself from such evidence being used against you.