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How social media may impact divorce

On Behalf of | Oct 2, 2023 | Divorce |

According to the Joint Economic Committee, 6.4 marriages of every 1,000 end in divorce in Massachusetts. Anyone facing a divorce has to be aware of how their actions could impact the final settlement.

In today’s digital age, the pervasive presence of social media in our lives has far-reaching consequences, even extending into the deeply personal realm of divorce. Social media can play a pivotal role in shaping the outcomes of these emotionally charged legal matters.

Providing evidence

Social media is a platform for individuals to share their lives, thoughts and feelings with a wide audience. During the course of a divorce, the other parties can use what people post on social media as evidence in court. This means that seemingly innocuous posts, pictures and comments can become ammunition in legal battles over child custody, alimony and property division.

Consider, for instance, a divorcing parent who frequently shares pictures of extravagant vacations or nights out on the town while claiming financial hardship in court. Such a discrepancy between one’s online persona and their legal could impact the court’s decisions on matters of financial support.

Inducing more conflict

Social media can become a breeding ground for miscommunication between divorcing spouses. Heated exchanges conducted in public forums can exacerbate already tense situations and lead to more acrimonious divorce proceedings. In some cases, inflammatory posts or comments can become evidence of one’s inability to co-parent effectively, potentially influencing child custody decisions.

Backing up accusations

A spouse can use the information from social media platforms to ascertain an individual’s lifestyle, habits and associations. This can have implications for divorce cases involving allegations of infidelity, substance abuse or other questionable behavior. Pictures, check-ins and tagged locations can serve as evidence in support of or against such claims.

Causing more distress

It can also be a source of additional emotional distress for those going through a divorce. Seeing a former spouse move on, post about new relationships or engage in once-shared activities can be emotionally challenging. This emotional turmoil can spill over into court proceedings, affecting one’s ability to make rational decisions and potentially harming their case.

Social media can influence a divorce in a variety of negative ways. Therefore, it is essential for individuals going through a divorce to exercise caution and prudence when it comes to their online presence.