Emma Hamilton Cole - Partner, Coles Miller

Causes Of Divorce: Social Networking17th Jul 2013

Social networking has had such a dramatic impact on modern life – sadly that now includes divorce.Emma Hamilton Cole - Partner, Coles Miller

Our family solicitors are seeing more and more evidence that has come from Facebook and other social networks.

The rapid erosion of privacy in the 21st century means that much of your personal life is now available for all to see. Whether it was you who posted the updates or not.

And do not think for one minute that unfriending your ex on Facebook will protect you from their wrath. It will not. Out of sight is not out of mind.

Our divorce solicitors in Bournemouth and Poole are seeing growing numbers of cases in which one party has recruited a mutual Facebook friend to spy on another.

So although your estranged spouse can no longer see your Facebook updates (because you have unfriended them), your so-called friend still can…and is cheerfully reporting back to your ex.

As the old saying goes: with friends like that, who needs enemies?

Worryingly, the use of evidence from social networks shows no sign of slowing down if the latest statistics from the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers are an indication.

Some 81 per cent of AAML members have used or encountered evidence from social media websites.

The advice is simple:

  • Do not post about your relationship grievances on social media. It can create significant difficulties or fan the flames of existing ones
  • Do not post about your ex – and avoid negative comments at all costs. Even if they post negatively about you.
  • Beware, even apparently benign posts can backfire.
  • Do not post photos of yourself at social gatherings. Situations can be misconstrued. Discourage your friends from posting photos of you.
  • Avoid checking in to any locations, even those unrelated to your home life, such as work. It could have unintended consequences, such as suggesting that you put work before family.
  • Check your privacy settings. And if in any doubt, do not post, do not comment.

Struggling with a difficult divorce? Get expert help from the Coles Miller family law team on 01202 673011.

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