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Posted on in Divorce

Geneva family law attorneysIn this technologically advanced age, social media is part of most people’s lives. Information both personal and private is shared over the internet, and with that freedom comes the potential dangers. While social media can play a role in people choosing to divorce—the most recent relevant data shows that 81 percent of attorneys surveyed by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) reported an increase in divorce cases using evidence obtained from social networks—it can also play a role in the outcome of a divorce already pending. Both can have a direct affect on you.

Child Custody Issues

By far, information found on social media is most commonly used as evidence in child custody cases—now called the allocation of parental responsibilities in Illinois. Nowadays, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts are much more commonly being introduced to support allegations of unethical or inappropriate behavior going on right under the judge’s nose, and while such posts might seem harmless, they can absolutely be used against you.

Posted on in Divorce

social media, Geneva divorce attorneyIt is no secret that divorce can be messy and complicated. This is all the more true with the proliferation of social media, a virtual world in which very little is left secret and no trauma is left private. If you are facing divorce, there are several lifestyle choices that you will have to make—beginning with finances, living arrangements, and parenting schedules. With these crucial and weighty decisions to make, it can seem a fool’s errand to attempt to also control less-important things like social media. And yet if you are going through divorce, understanding how to get your social media accounts under control can be one of the most important things you can do.

Why Worry?

There are several reasons for this, and they are not all only applicable if you are going through a less-than-amicable divorce process. The first, and most obvious, is that it can be painful to watch your soon-to-be-ex spouse moving on with his or her life. The second is that anything you say on social media can be used against you during the divorce proceedings—something that divorcing couples in the past never had to even consider. If, for example, you have separated from your spouse and each are dating (even if it is an arrangement to which you both have verbally agreed), posting pictures of anyone you are dating can be used against you in court. It could be wise to refrain from posting any pictures of yourself out on the town on public social media accounts during divorce proceedings, as they could be construed as cheating. Again, this is advisable even if the arrangement has been verbally agreed upon.

Posted on in Divorce

social media, evidence, divorce case, Illinois divorce attorneyAfter months or even years of unhappiness, you have finally decided that it is time for your marriage to end. It happens. In fact, it happens to about 800,000 couples every year in the United States, or about 2,200 per day, including weekends. If you are like many individuals, it can be very tempting to take to Facebook or Instagram in celebration of your newfound freedom. Others, sadly, turn to social media as an outlet for disparaging their partners, in hopes of finding support from friends and loved ones, or simply out of anger or spite. Whatever the reason, it is often best to limit your use of social media during your divorce to prevent potential unforeseen consequences.

Use of Social Media in Divorce Cases

According to recent study conducted by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), as many as 99 percent of family law attorneys have observed an increase in the use of text message and social media evidence in divorce and family proceedings in the last few years. Many divorce attorneys are even incorporating strategies for uncovering such evidence. What was once the territory of private investigators with cameras and notebooks is now often covered by voluntary posts on Facebook.

Geneva Family Law Attorney, Facebook and DivorceThe modern world is continuing to become increasingly connected. It is nearly impossible to imagine daily life without cell phones, tablets, or computers and the accessibility of information they provide. However, there have been indications in recent years that personal relationships may be affected by increased internet use, particularly if that use centers around social media. Several studies have examined a possible link between social media use and the rate of divorce, and the findings are very interesting.

One such study was published in the July 2014 edition of Computers in Human Behavior by a team of researchers from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and Boston University. The team’s research “explore[d] the relationship between using social networks sites (SNS), marriage satisfaction and divorce rates using survey data of married individuals and state-level data from the United States.” The results of the study clearly suggested that as the use of Facebook and other social network sites increased in a given state, there was a correlating increase in the divorce rate during the same period.

The research team was even able to quantify the relationship. They found that a 20 percent increase in a state’s population using Facebook was linked to a 2.2 percent rise in divorce rate for that state. However, Sebastian Valenzuela, one of the study’s co-authors and assistant professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, notes, “We don’t know whether Facebook is causing divorce or if divorce is causing the use of Facebook.”

communication and divorce, damage relationships, Geneva family law attorney, infidelity, social media, social media and relationships, social media reliance, The Law Offices of Douglas B. Warlick & Associates, TwitterThe University of Missouri recently published research results on how Twitter and social media can be hazardous to the health of our personal relationships. And while social networks have revolutionized how we build and maintain our relationships, researcher Russell Clayton, a doctoral student at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, claims that active Twitter users are more likely to experience conflict in the romance department.

According to an article recapping Clayton's findings published by the MU News, Clayton's research indicates that active Twitter users may find themselves outside the door looking in, as excessive Twitter use can lead to emotional and/or physical cheating or even divorce.

The study entitled, “The Third Wheel: The Impact of Twitter Use on Relationship Infidelity and Divorce” was recently published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking. In fact, this recent study on Twitter and its hazards of the romantic type was in follow-up to Clayton's previous study on Facebook and how spending too much face-time on the social site can also lead to cheating and divorce.

For the Twitter study, Clayton polled over 580 Twitter users from all demographic backgrounds and age ranges. By asking participants certain questions regarding their Twitter usage Clayton found that more than often a study participant openly admitted that his or her Twitter usage was found to have an increase in partner conflict often leading to undesirable outcomes such as infidelity or even divorce.

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