8 Tips For Social Media During A Divorce
Are you going through a divorce and worried about how social media can impact it? You’re not alone. Social media has become so integrated into our society that more than half of the world’s population is an active daily user of some social media platform. Because of this, our clients ask us about social media and how it affects their court cases from time to time. The answer is that it has the ability to affect your court case. This can be done when an opposing attorney brings forward the content you post, like, or share as evidence to undermine you in court.
What Counts As Social Media?
First, we have to look at the definition of social media. According to Merriam-Webster, social media is defined as “forms of electronic communication (such as websites for social networking and microblogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content (such as videos).”
While this is a broad definition, we can give some examples of social media. Keep in mind, that this is not an exhaustive list: Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Tik Tok, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and any dating app.
Are There Tips On How To Use Social Media During a Divorce?
Yes, there are plenty of tips! While there can be more harm than good that comes from social media during a court proceeding, there can be ways to stay on the safe side when you use social media.
Do not post with emotion
Once you start a court case, it is really important that you regularly get in check with yourself and your emotions. Avoid social media when you are upset, angry, sad, smug, or extremely happy. If you put something online and hit send, you cannot take it back even if it is deleted. People can screenshot anything and most platforms do not alert you of this. You do not want that shared with the wrong person.
Do not delete content
We already spoke about how a post is out there for everyone to see once you click “Post”. You just need to own it. In very rare circumstances, you do not want to destroy evidence. By deleting your posts, you can actually get in trouble if certain things were already done in your case. Instead, we suggest that you hide the posts if that is possible and speak to your lawyer before you delete anything.
Do not post about your case
It does not matter if your profile is private or public. It still gets out there. You may not know who you’re connected to and you do not know who they are connected to. That information can be shared, spread around, and possibly used against you. Instead of posting about your case, pick up the phone and talk to a trusted confidant, family member, attorney, or therapist.
Focus on your kids when you post about them
You should not be passive-aggressive in your posts about your kids or the comments that are underneath the post. Avoid bad-mouthing your ex, their family, or their friends even if it is done in a vague way. That can land you in some legal trouble.
Do not post about drugs or alcohol
We understand that cannabis, alcohol, cigarettes, and e-cigarettes are all legal in Illinois but posting about them may not help your court case. The judges and courts are people with their own opinions that may differ from your own. It is important that you take that into consideration. Now, we are not saying that you need to run from pictures that are being taken when you’re holding alcohol or any legal substance. Just be mindful and try to hide it. Be smart, be aware of your situation, be aware of where you are, and recognize that you do not want these things out in public for people to see. Perception is everything.
Do not post passive-aggressive content
A post, share, or like may seem harmless, but that may not be the case. For example, sharing a meme that says, “Don’t let someone ruin your day,” can be misinterpreted as you calling your ex out. You are under a microscope now that you’re in court, and it is really important that you understand that. You cannot simply repost, like, share, or tag someone in everything you see because people will be watching you.
Avoid changing your relationship status on your profile
You are still legally married until your case has closed. So, changing your relationship status to “Single” or “it’s Complicated” will just draw attention to yourself, put your loved ones in a difficult situation, and may potentially make things worse for yourself during court. It is not worth it.
Use social media as if the judge is viewing your profile
Please, do not post provocative photographs, pictures of you dating someone else, or anything you would not want a judge to see. In fact, imagine that the judge will review every single one of your posts, likes, shares, comments, retweets, and anything else you have on your profiles. Would you want them to see that? If not, then avoid putting it on your profile in any manner. You will be done with your case in the future. You can post whatever you like then.
Are You Concerned About Your Divorce Case in Will, Cook, or Dupage County?
Are you worried about how social media will affect your divorce? Do you need to review your options before filing? Then schedule a complimentary consultation with us today by clicking this link.