Although we live in an age when social media seems to be everywhere and an accepted part of our society. But despite its prevalence, many people still treat social media as a different world, and somewhere that is private, and not related to our real world.

Nowhere is that more false, than in the world of divorce and custody, where people make mistakes on social media, without realizing they are making them. Here are some common mistakes that people make on social media that end up affecting their divorce or custody cases (and usually, affect them in a bad way).

Social Media Can be Used Against You

Social media information is evidence that can be used in court, like any other evidence. In fact, there are many businesses that specialize in monitoring others’ social media posts, looking for damaging or incriminating posts or pictures.

Money Issues

It is common in a divorce case to say that you are not making as much money as your spouse thinks you make. This is because alimony and child support are based on income, so it behooves litigants to demonstrate that they make less money.

It seriously undermines a claim of having no money, or reduced employment, when you are posting pictures of yourself skiing or traveling on vacation or in front of your new car. Even an innocuous photo can get you into trouble. For example, a picture of you at your child’s picnic online may seem harmless…until you look closer and see in the photo that you were wearing a $15,000 watch to the party.

Your Behavior Matters

Let’s make something clear—a single parent has a right to drink, go out with friends, or have fun, and none of that makes you a bad parent.

But pictures say a lot. If you are arguing with your ex over which home environment is best for the kids, do you want pictures of you drinking, partying, or kissing multiple men or women online? It may be better to wait until the issues in your family law case are settled before posting those kinds of things.

Taking Bad Things Down

Let’s say that you are about to get divorced, or have a custody battle, or even a modification of custody. You know there are pictures on your social media accounts that won’t look very good for you. Can you delete them before your case starts?

The answer is yes, but with a big caveat. You can take your photos down from whatever site that they were on, so that they are no longer displaying online. However, you do have an obligation to preserve the information.

In other words, you can delete a post online, but you would need to save the photo, and any comments that were under the photo. You cannot delete or destroy the post or photo itself. This is to avoid allegations that you destroyed evidence.

Contact our New Jersey divorce law attorneys at The Law Office of Agnes Rybar LLC for help today to discuss the best strategies for your custody or divorce case.

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The Law Office of Agnes Rybar, LLC, in Toms River, New Jersey, serves clients throughout Ocean County, Monmouth County and elsewhere in South Jersey and along the Jersey Shore, including many in Forked River, Brick and Lakewood.

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