During a meeting last week, a senior family lawyer with over 25 years of experience told me that he tells clients involved in high conflict cases to delete all their social media accounts.
There can be a strong temptation to let the world know just how awful your ex is. This same senior lawyer also said, “people think if they post negative comments about their ex that everyone will agree and take their side.” It is a good idea not to post anything to social media when you are upset. There is plenty of good research that says we do not make good decisions when we are emotionally charged, and once a post has been sent, there is no taking it back.
Of course, the reality is that posting negative things about your ex (i.e. that they are a bad parent, they are greedy, irresponsible, etc) can not only make you look petty and unkind to your friends and family, but can also have legal repercussions.
One man in the US set up a fake account and pretended to be a new romantic interest in order to gather evidence against his wife in their custody dispute. The court was not amused by his antics, (nor his ex-wife’s for that matter and the oldest child ended up being taken away by child services.)
It is now established that social media posts are an admissible form of evidence. The courts do not look favourably on one parent bad-mouthing the other because they do not see that behaviour as the being in the best interest of the children, and could be part of parental alienation. Short of that, they may still indicate poor judgment or emotional immaturity to a judge.
If you're having an issue related to this topic we'd be happy to help. You can call us at (902) 826-3070 to set up a meeting or contact us online. You can also schedule a no commitment Issue Review Consult for $100+HST where you have the opportunity to explain your situation to a lawyer and get basic advice before deciding whether or not you'd like to retain us.
Peter G. Duke - Associate Lawyer
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