Social Media and Divorce Law

 

Gordon Burrows

Gordon Burrows serves as a matrimonial and divorce lawyer working in White Plains, New York. Divorce is a major practice area for Gordon Burrows, and he was instrumental in a case that allowed Facebook page information to be used as evidence in a custody battle to prove that one parent was often away from home.

In an era when almost seven in 10 US citizens use some sort of social media platform, websites and apps like Facebook and Instagram have increasingly become a factor in modern divorce. Though these platforms seem private, friends and family can often catch wind of an angry post related to a recent ex. In some cases, social media posts are admissible as evidence against someone in divorce or child support proceedings. Even text messages must be carefully considered since these private messages can sometimes be subpoenaed.

Many divorce lawyers advise against social media use altogether during a divorce or separation, but posts that indicate anything about your financial situation or your relationship status are especially dangerous. Family situations are typically very tense, delicate, and volatile, and even a seemingly innocent post could end up being taken the wrong way. Divorce is stressful for many people, and social media can make that much worse.

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Social Media and Its Impact on Child Custody Cases

Gordon Burrows

A New York-based attorney with over three decades of experience, Gordon Burrows has practiced law in White Plains since 2004. Focused on matrimonial and family law, Gordon Burrows handles cases involving divorce as well as child custody and support matters.

With many people sharing their thoughts, feelings, and daily activities on social media today, posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other sites often find their way into child custody cases. While little thought may go into creating these posts, such digitized quips can be used as potentially damaging evidence in family court.

One of the most common mistakes that parents make in the midst of a custody battle is to use social media to vent their frustrations against the other parent or even the attorneys and judges involved in the case. Many times, this information is viewed as public knowledge and can be used as evidence to determine a parent’s maturity and willingness to support the other parent’s relationship with their children.

Social media posts that depict a parent as irresponsible or unable to properly care for their child can also affect a judge’s decision in a child custody dispute. Because social media activity can potentially be used to determine parental fitness and character, many attorneys advise clients to be very careful with posts or avoid social media altogether during a custody case. Additionally, some family law firms now ask clients to complete a social media worksheet to help them identify potential problems.