Social networking has changed the way a lot of people communicate, and now it may be changing marriage and divorce as well in Texas and elsewhere. More and more, evidence gathered from Facebook is being used to pit spouses against each other in the courtroom. According to a survey conducted by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers in 2010, 80 percent of respondents said that Facebook had been used either by them or against them in their divorce cases.
All Facebook posts were once considered private by many of its users, but as we can see now, that isn’t always the case. Divorce attorneys are increasingly going into the courtroom with comments or statuses that were posted on Facebook in addition to emails and text messages. This should make anyone going through a divorce think twice before posting in haste on social media.
Moreover, it would seem that social media could be helping to reveal infidelities. In one case involving a Texas man, he noticed that his wife kept hiding the computer screen from his sight. He saw that she was talking to someone on Facebook, and he later found out that the person was her former high school boyfriend. Over time, those Facebook conversations developed into an affair, and the couple subsequently divorced.
Yet electronic evidence in the divorce courtroom poses just as much a challenge as it does an opportunity. It can help to resolve ambiguities and disagreements about matters of fact. On the other hand, one spouse may feel that a comment they left on their friend’s profile on Facebook is being unfairly used against him or her. It is so easy for attorneys to get a hold of anything that was said on the internet nowadays, so it is important to check yourself before posting, no matter how private you think it might be.