The Dangers of Social Media in New Jersey Divorce Cases
Social media has become an integral part of our daily lives, and it can be used for many different reasons. However, if you're involved in a New Jersey divorce case, it could be a source of danger that could end up causing serious issues. With this in mind, if you are pursuing a marriage dissolution case, you need to pay attention to any advice your attorney may offer in regard to social media in New Jersey divorce.
The reality is that there are multiple ways in which social media in New Jersey divorce potentially can cause problems for you. With that noted, there are five more commonly occurring problems, issues, or dangers that have the potential to arise in regard to social media in New Jersey divorce:
- Unfavorable evidence
- Intrusive monitoring
- Privacy violations
If either spouse has posted things on social media that could be seen as unfavorable evidence in the divorce case, those posts could be used against them in the divorce court proceedings. A variety of types of posts can fall into the category of being unfavorable. For example, posts about lavish vacations or expensive purchases can potentially be used as unfavorable evidence in divorce proceedings when it comes to matters associated with property and debt division. In a good number of instances, divorce attorneys advise their clients to stay off of social media while a marital dissolution case is pending (or at least post at the platforms in only a very limited manner).Intrusive Monitoring
If one spouse is monitoring the other's activity on social media, such as checking their account to see who they are interacting with or what posts they have been making, this can be considered intrusive and could even constitute grounds for a restraining order or other legal action. It is important to not overstep boundaries when it comes to online surveillance during a divorce. There is a distinction between reviewing an opposing spouse’s social media during a divorce proceeding and stalking that individual. Oftentimes, it is advisable to leave social media monitoring to legal counsel.Discourtesy
If either spouse engages in inappropriate or offensive behavior on social media during the course of the divorce proceedings this can cause unnecessary complications in the proceedings. Additionally, comments made by either party publicly or through direct messages could backfire if there is a dispute over custody, child support issues, and other matters. This can hurt a party’s position in ongoing marriage dissolution proceedings.Privacy Violations
Sharing private information surrounding the proceedings through social media channels is never advisable as it can lead to costly privacy violations if another party becomes aware of sensitive details being released without their authorization or consent. A wise course is to never post information about pending divorce proceedings on social media. (The fact is that a party to a divorce typically is best served by sharing too much in any manner about pending divorce proceedings, including in face-to-face conversations with others.)Cyberstalking
We have alluded to the matter of stalking in divorce proceedings a moment ago. The importance of avoiding this type of conduct warrants a further discussion, which we provide now. Cyberstalking is one of the most common risks associated with using social media in a New Jersey divorce case and should never be taken lightly as it can have serious implications both legally and emotionally for both parties involved in the case. This especially can be the case if children are involved who may witness cyberstalking activities from one parent towards another online.
In conclusion, when going through a New Jersey divorce case it very well may be best to avoid all forms of social media use unless explicitly authorized by your lawyer. Otherwise social media in a New Jersey divorce may place you at risk for any number of unforeseen consequences that could have negative impacts on the ultimate outcome of your marital dissolution case. Improper use of social media has the propensity for negatively impacting everything from child custody and parenting time to asset and debt division. Not being able to spend time on social media during a divorce is a comparatively small sacrifice when various risks like those discussed in this article are considered. If you have questions about a divorce, call (201) 845-7400 for a free consultation.