We’ve all heard the warnings about being careful using social networking so as not to impair our professional lives. What about our personal lives? As family law attorneys, we are all too aware of how Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media sites can affect our family law cases. These sites can be used to obtain pictures and information about how a person is living that can be used against them in their family law case. For example, there are cases where pictures of a person surrounded by alcohol and appearing to be consuming alcohol have been used to show that the person has not maintained court-ordered sobriety. There are also occurrences where LinkedIn profiles have been used as proof of a person’s ability to earn a certain income (especially important in cases involving child support and/or spousal maintenance).
If you think a family law case may be in your future, it may be time to consider more carefully what you post online. Before posting something in a public forum, consider whether you would want a judge (potentially one who is determining child support, the placement of your children, a division of your marital property and other important issues) to see what you are sharing with the world. If you don’t want the judge to see what you are about to post, you probably shouldn’t show the rest of the Internet either.