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Protect Yourself Online During a Custody Battle

A divorce may challenge your relationship with your ex in ways you never imagined. However, the co-parenting responsibilities you share mean that you need to find a way to communicate with each other in an amicable way. Add a custody battle in the mix, and you may want to log in to Facebook to rant about your ex every day.

Your ex may be the one putting the “battle” in custody battle, but that doesn’t mean that things you say and do on online posts cannot be held against you. In fact, mistakes you make in social media posts may come back to haunt you in court. Consider the following before making any social media posts during your custody battle.

Leave the Kids Out of Your Posts

Although one of the joys of social media may be sharing about your pride and joy, you should try to refrain from posting anything about your children during any family law matter. Similarly, you shouldn’t post details about the split. Steer clear of posting information about what you think is best for your kids or rants about why you think your ex is putting your children in danger.

If you suspect that your children are in danger, contact the authorities immediately. Document the situation when possible. However, don’t bring the drama to social media. Angry rants that contain false information about the person can be used against you.

Privacy and Social Media Don’t Go Together

Social media is public, and you should always consider social media to be public. Even if you set your posts to friends-only on Facebook, anyone could easily take a screen shot of your posts. Also, the settings may be changed by accident, or you could be hacked. Don’t be lured in by the false sense of security that friends-only settings provide.

Before you post anything at all on social media during the custody battle, think about whether it’s something you would say in court in front of the judge. Could it be used against you? You should assume that anything you say on social media could be shared in public and in court.

Beware of Social Media Friends You’ve Never Met

You never know who is on the other side of a screen. You may think someone on your friends list is one person, but it could be your ex’s investigator trying to get information to use against you. Be careful about who you add, especially around the time of the custody battle. Even so, don’t post anything that could be used against you.

Similarly, don’t send information via private messages to social media friends you don’t know in real life. It can be comforting to vent to a virtual stranger, but you never know who you are giving information to online. Anyone can lie and create a fake social media profile. Vent to friends you know well over the phone or in person.

Talk to Your Ex About Social Media

Talk to your ex about your feelings about social media. Try to come to an agreement with your ex on what should be shared and posted about the children during and after a family law matter concludes. Be open to compromise when possible, and be clear on what your expectations are. Be firm about what you feel will be best for your kids.

You and your ex may decide to completely leave your children off social media until they are old enough to create their own social media accounts. If your kids are already on social media, set rules for what they can share on social media about family issues as well.

Finally, the best custody battle is the one you don’t get in. The Lowry Law Firm offers the counsel you need when faced with difficult family law decisions. Contact us when you first think about getting a divorce for advice on your unique situation. We can help you move forward with your best interests in mind.

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