Whether you are involved in a family law case, divorce, child custody, litigation, bankruptcy, immigration law case, or more, your social media account can have a great impact on your situation. The last thing you want is for your posts to be used against you in a court of law. Here are some ways you can avoid this!
If you are facing a family law court case, an immigration case, a bankruptcy or a litigation case your social media use can have a negative impact on your case. Although many social media users believe that their accounts are private, they are not. The prosecutors can search your published social media account without a warrant. They can easily access your friends' lists, followers' lists, and much of your content. This information can be used as evidence against you in court. Prosecutors often use social media to gather evidence against defendants. And don’t forget, they also have the power to subpoena (written document requesting additional evidence) information from your account at any time.
If there has been reasonable doubt thrown onto you and your case, you may want to delete incriminating posts and even consider deactivating your social media account. Any attorney, prosecutor, or judge has the ability to go online and research your accounts – immigration attorneys, divorce lawyers, litigation attorneys or any attorney can look up any online information at will. Leaving your account active and open to the public can give the prosecution access to your posts, but it can also give you a guilty look. If you are under investigation and have any questions or doubts, you should always consult with your lawyer first. The attorney you hire for your case is there to help you the best they can, and remember you are protected by attorney-client privilege, so withholding information can only hurt your case in the long run. You should also avoid discussing your case on social media at all costs! You might want to share the progress with your friends or rejoice to your family about some new discoveries, but do so in the privacy of your own home and away from social media platforms. Whether your case is dealing with a real estate transaction, child custody modification, or filing for an adjustment of your citizenship status, you need to consult your lawyer before posting anything on social media. If you post anything about your case, you may be accused of tampering with evidence.
This kind of caution goes for every case. Take a family law case for example, whether it is for divorce, a child custody battle, guardianship, paternity, or another family law matter, it is important to keep in mind, again, that social media can be used as evidence in court! In fact, almost one-third of all divorce cases are based on online affairs. The following are some more tips on how to stay safe on social media:
- First, be careful about how you post on social media. Don't talk bad about your ex or post threatening messages. This can make you look very bad in court.
- Second, avoid posting information that can damage your relationship with your child. Posts that show that you are unfit to care for your child can also affect your custody battle.
- Third, be aware of how your friends and family are using social media. Some are more likely to post private affairs that may involve you, onto their social media page. You want to keep all of your personal details private!
- Finally, be aware of your lifestyle. If you're making major purchases such as a car or a new home, be sure to keep this private. This information can be used to suggest that you're over-spending while in family court, bankruptcy or in a major litigation lawsuit. While it's tempting to post pictures of new things, this could be used negatively against you. (If you do spend a lot of money and it shows on social media, you may even have to pay more alimony.)
Social media is becoming increasingly popular, and it's important to be aware of how it can affect your case. Any experienced attorney can give you guidance on how to use social media in your case and help you avoid getting into legal trouble. Whether you're going through a divorce, child custody or visitation modification, an immigration law case, bankruptcy, litigation or more you should always consult with your attorney! The attorney you choose to retain for your case is on your side and wants to see you achieve the desired outcome for your case.
Social media can be a convenient way to communicate and keep in touch with friends from all across the world. The key takeaway is - it can certainly come back to haunt you in the courtroom in some instances. And, even though the privacy settings on many sites can help protect your information, they don't guarantee it. At the end of the day, avoid posting anything that could potentially be used against you. Be on guard with your social media and don’t blast your personal life all over for everyone to know, from your grandmother, to your best friend, your neighbors and to the prosecuting attorney.
If you or someone you know is need of legal assistance with their case, reach out to The Law Offices of Eugene Mogilevsky, LLC today to schedule a consultation with our attorneys! You can reach our office at (317) 743-7958 or submit a Contact form through our website at Contact Us | The Law Offices of Eugene Mogilevsky (egmlegal.com) and someone from our office will reach out to you!
Disclaimer: This blog post is for educational and informational purposes only and is not to be taken as legal advice in any capacity. Reading this blog does not constitute or establish an attorney-client relationship.