If you are going through a divorce in Massachusetts, you probably haven’t given any thought to how your social media activity could impact your divorce settlement. In fact, your only concern with social media may be to hide your activities from your soon-to-be-ex spouse, or flaunt them, depending upon the details of your situation. Or, you may be using social media to find out what your spouse is up to.
Either way, there is no doubt that social media opens the doors for finding out more about each others’ activitiesthan was previously possible, as well as sharing more about our own behaviors. While this can be fun and appropriate in some situations, divorce and social media do not go hand-in-hand.
Social Media Could Negatively Impact Your Divorce Settlement
There are a number of issues that you and your spouse may need to settle in a divorce, including:
- How property will be divided;
- Whether or not one of you will pay/receive spousal support; and
- Who will get custody of your children.
While Massachusetts does allow for no-fault divorces, and does not insist that a court consider marital misconduct when making a determination about the above issues, your behavior will certainly be considered. Pretend that your social media activity shows that you:
- Are having an affair, and spending money on that person and maintaining the affair (gifts, hotel rooms, etc.);
- Are spending your new-found life as a single person drinking, going to bars, or partying a little too hard; or
- Are having a hard time with the divorce, and have been squandering joint funds as such (big shopping sprees, gambling, expensive trips, etc).
Massachusetts law does allow for a court to consider all relevant factors when making a determination about things like spousal support and property division, including whether or not one spouse has committed financial misconduct. The law also requires that the “best interests of the child” be considered, which means that if social media evidence suggests that you’re having more fun being single than parenting, your spouse may be awarded more parenting time or legal decision making power.
Get Off Social Media; Get an Attorney
We know that social media is ubiquitous, and that spending time on social media may very well be a part of your daily routine. However, we urge you to suspend your accounts and your social media activity while you are going through a divorce; if there is anything on social media that suggests to the court that your morals are compromised or that you have been using marital assets improperly, the outcome of your divorce could be concluded adverse to you and more beneficial to your spouse.
At The Law Offices of Attorney Michael F. Mimno, we know how to improve your chances of a divorce being resolved in your favor, and can assist you in navigating the divorce process. For an initial consultation, call our law offices today or visit us online.