With increasing frequency, social media is playing an active role in people’s divorces. While most people post photos, comments and status updates and then never give them a second thought, these things don’t go away, and in a divorce they can have real impacts months – or even years – down the road.

The following are some of the ways that Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms can all affect your divorce:

1. The Things You Say Online Can Be Used Against You in Real Life.

These days, divorce lawyers routinely use Facebook status updates and other social media posts as evidence. Anything you make publicly-available online is fair game in your divorce. Photos of a late night out might be used to argue against granting you custody or visitation. Online arguments about infidelity can show up in a battle over property rights – one of the limited areas in which fault can still come into play in a Texas divorce.

2. Your Friends Can Get You Into Trouble.

Just like your spouse can use your public social media posts, your spouse can use your friends’ social media posts as well. If you’ve been tagged in a photo or a friend’s post suggests that you may have been dishonest about your whereabouts, these are things that you may be forced to confront during your divorce.

3. Your Entire Online History May Be Fair Game.

Beyond just your public profiles, during your divorce, your spouse may also be able to gain access to your entire account histories. Updates and photos that you have deleted may still be accessible, and if you tried to delete information in order to keep it from your spouse, this could come back to bite you if it is revealed during a forensic investigation.

4. Your Spouse May Be Able to Serve Divorce Papers Through Facebook.

In order to initiate divorce proceedings, the spouse who files for divorce must serve the divorce papers on his or her wife or husband. Evading service is a common (though ill-advised) tactic for postponing the inevitable divorce process. But, last year, when one husband refused to accept service a judge authorized his wife to effect service through a Facebook private message.

5. The “Facebook Divorce.”

Finally, stepping back, Facebook could be what leads to your divorce in the first place. Setting aside all of the ways that social media can come into play during your divorce, there is new research suggesting that Facebook is quickly becoming a leading cause of divorce. From one spouse (or both spouses) spending too much time online to one spouse discovering the other’s affair on social media, the “Facebook divorce” has become a major factor contributing to divorce rates in Texas and nationwide.

Nordhaus Walpole, PLLC | Allen Divorce Lawyers

At Nordhaus Walpole, PLLC, we provide experienced legal representation for divorcing spouses in Allen and throughout Collin County, Texas. If you have questions about the ways that social media could impact your divorce, call (214) 726-1450 or contact us online for a complimentary consultation.