Whether you’re one of many Minnesota residents who reach for their cell phones before even getting out of bed or among those who strictly limit their use of electronic devices, chances are social media plays a role in your life. If you’re a parent, you likely spend a lot of time trying to keep tabs on what your kids are doing online. Advanced technology has definitely changed the face of family life in America.
Have you considered how your social media habits might affect your divorce? When you decided to file the petition, you likely thought about your children and how you would work to protect their best interests. Regarding social media, there are definitely precautions you’ll want to take as you prepare for litigation, especially if you anticipate a child custody battle.
Lock it all down
During marriage, you and your spouse may have been privy to each others’ passwords. One of the first things you’ll want to do after filing for divorce (or perhaps, even before) is to change the privacy settings on your social media accounts. In fact, while you’re at it, you might consider doing the same for any online bank accounts or other password-protected programs you currently run.
Take a trip down social media memory lane
Especially if you and your soon-to-be ex disagree about child custody issues, you may be in for a legal fight. If you think there is anything at all, such as writing or photographs, etc., in past posts on your social media pages, you’ll want to scroll back and closely review the content.
There’s truth to the idea that, once something hits the internet, it is never fully gone, even if you delete it; it’s also true that you can do some damage control by deleting posts that your spouse may be able to use against you in court.
Limit your social media time during proceedings
You might feel the need to vent as you navigate divorce proceedings. It’s better to seek support from a trusted friend or family member rather than post all the nitty-gritty details of your divorce on Facebook, Twitter or another social media site. Especially if you have children, protecting their interests may be easier if you keep information about your divorce offline.
If your co-parent posts something you believe is pertinent
What if you are filing for sole custody because you believe your ex is an unfit parent? You might believe evidence exists on a social media page, such as photos of wild parties or posts that show your children’s best interests are at risk.
The judge overseeing your child custody case would definitely want to know about any evidence that would warrant further investigation or prompt him or her to rule in your favor for sole custody of your children.