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How social media can affect your divorce

Social media plays a huge role in our lives today. Unfortunately, that is not always a good thing; especially when it comes to how it can affect our relationships.

Below, we examine two common ways social media can cause problems or complicate already troubled marriages and what it means when the parties involved decide to divorce.

When it causes the divorce

Social media is increasingly becoming the driving force behind the decision to end a marriage. People are using sites like Facebook or Snapchat to meet, reconnect with or communicate with people outside their marriage with whom they have emotional or physical affairs.

Social media platforms can also make it easier for people to engage in and foster so-called toxic relationships, as this article notes. It is not difficult to find someone online who can justify bad behavior or make a marital situation seem worse than it may be.

In these cases, outside parties play a powerful role in the decision to divorce, which can make the non-participant feel powerless and confused. Under these circumstances, divorces can become especially contentious.

When it complicates the divorce

Venting online or oversharing details of a divorce online can cause serious problems during the legal process. Social media use during divorce can lead to allegations of fraud or lying, it can exacerbate hurt feelings and it can result in misinformation and misguided advice.

With this in mind, parties would be wise to think carefully about what they do or say online during a divorce. Often, it is wise to stay away from social media use altogether to avoid situations or statements that jeopardize a person's position in mediation sessions or the courtroom.

Tips for divorces involving social media

Whether it contributed to your divorce or complicated the process, social media use can add a problematic element to any divorce in California. If this is the case in your split, be cautious with what you do and say online. It is helpful to imagine a judge in court reading aloud everything you say, share or like online.

And if your soon-to-be ex is doing or saying things on social media that affect your divorce, it can be wise to talk to an attorney about whether such information is relevant to the case. In some cases, one party's online behavior or statements can be used as evidence to pursue more favorable resolutions for the other party. 

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