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How social media posts could be used in divorce cases

Posting on social media has become an intrinsic part of daily life for many Virginia residents. Facebook pages and Twitter feeds often paint a telling picture of how a person feels and thinks. Many divorcing spouses turn to social media to vent when the emotional strain of the process begins to take a toll, but they would be wise to think carefully before they post. Everything they say is likely to be read by their spouses and their attorneys.

One way to prevent this is to revise privacy settings and make social media feeds private. However, this is not likely to provide much of a deterrent to individuals with advanced computer skills. Curating social media accounts and eliminating potentially embarrassing content may also be of little use. This is because just about everything that is posted on the internet can be found in online archives by those who know where to look.

Social media content can be extremely damaging in divorce cases if it contradicts what spouses say in court or property division negotiations. Spouses who claim that they cannot afford to pay alimony may find photographs placed online that show them living extravagantly or making large purchases that are difficult to explain. Social media accounts may also be used to establish infidelity when they have been used to arrange romantic encounters.

Most people use their cellphones to stay in touch with others and post on social media. However, few of them stop to think that their wireless service providers will be able to provide detailed records of their communications. In a divorce case, a family law attorney may use subpoenas to obtain text message and call histories as this is evidence that can be printed and produced in court.

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