What do Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok all have in common? Family lawyers see them as potential “goldmines” in child custody cases. Why? Because everything you say on social media can and will be used against you in court.
So, unless you want your case to play out like a reality TV episode, you may want to think twice before you post. As the Kim and Kanye online divorce drama taught us, social media and child custody battles don't mix. If you're in the midst of a North Carolina child custody case, don’t do anything to jeopardize the outcome. Find out what can be used against you, and learn a few expert tips from a North Carolina child custody lawyer.
What Can Be Used Against You in a Child Custody Battle?
Can Facebook posts be used in family court? What about memes you like on Instagram? Or Tweets you share? The short answer to all of these is… absolutely!
It's best to assume attorneys will use anything you put in writing or engage with on social media. As the saying goes, it's better to be safe than sorry. So, before you click “share” or press the “like” button, imagine how you’d feel if the judge presiding over your case reviewed your social activity or read your posts aloud in court. It does happen.
This rule applies to "reposting" memes and gifs, as well as comments or reactions you leave on others’ posts. If you share a meme about "deadbeat dads" or like a "baby mama drama" post, don’t be surprised if it shows up in your custody order. Make sure your friends and family follow this rule too. If your mother bashes your ex online, it could harm your custody determination.
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4 Child Custody Battle Tips to Remember If You Use Social Media
Divorce is never fun, but coparenting doesn’t have to be a drag. If you’re currently involved in a child custody case or have a rocky relationship with your ex, think twice before you post anything on social media.
In some cases, it may be good to stay off of social media for the duration of your case, so follow the advice of your attorney when it comes to your online activity. If you choose to remain active on social media, these four tips will prevent a Facebook post from ruining your custody case.
#1: Never Vent About Your Child Custody Case
Keep comments about your case, the attorneys, and the judge offline. Remember, anything you say on social media can be used against you in court. So, don't put it out there for the world to see… even if you’re just joking.
#2: Don't Post Photos of Drug or Alcohol Use
What happens in Vegas really should stay in Vegas! If you’re in the middle of a divorce, the same is true for happy hour, Halloween, and vacation pictures too. Even if you took these photos before filing for divorce, your ex could still use them against you. For example, if your spouse sees you partying or drinking too much, they may use this information as evidence that you are unfit to raise your children.
#3: Never Make Negative Remarks About the Mother or Father of Your Children
Any disparaging comments on social media could come back to haunt you. If your ex can prove you made derogatory statements about them, it could cause the court to question your ability as a parent. So, no matter how angry you are at your ex, please do not post any negative comments on social media. Remember, your kids may see those comments too.
#4: Don't Brag About Expensive Purchases
New cars, TVs or gadgets are exciting, but some celebrations are best to keep private. If child support is a factor in your NC child custody battle, don't brag about big purchases. Just one post could significantly impact the amount of child support you receive or pay, and can make a judge question whether your child is a priority.
Do You Have Questions About Your Child Custody Case?
Spidell Family Law has years of experience navigating North Carolina child custody law. So, if you're looking for an attorney for your child custody case, you can trust us to handle it with care.
Do you have questions about NC child custody law? Please get in touch!