On behalf of The Marks Law Firm, L.L.C. posted in Child Custody on Tuesday, January 8, 2013
The ink was barely dry on the divorce decree when a suburban St. Louis woman discovered digital images of her children had been posted online without her permission. The culprit? Her ex-husband. He had posted the images in one of the last places the woman wanted to see them: an online dating site.
She got angry, she remembers, and told her ex-husband that it was inappropriate to post the photos on Match.com. His response was to block her from seeing his dating profile.
Though she has now been divorced five years, and is remarried, she says that if she had the divorce to do over again, she would make use of digital images of the kids a part of the custody agreement.
Social media has become one of the most popular ways for people to not only meet potential partners, but also a favored way for families to share photos, calendars, thoughts and moments with far-flung members.
The president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers says his family law firm urges clients to close their Facebook page and similar accounts as they begin to ponder divorce. Parents who post photos of themselves doing questionable things might find their suitability as a parent questioned in court.
If they post photos their children find embarrassing, the parents might also find their judgment being questioned as custody arrangements are being worked out.
Far better to be cautious and conservative when it comes to photos and comments online, he said. Even better to simply shutter the accounts and avoid the chance of having a “harmless” Facebook post come back to haunt the parent.
Parents who are contemplating divorce should discuss with a family law attorney these steps and others that are wise to take before, during and after the legal process.
Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, “Who gets custody of the Facebook profile info after a divorce?,” Dec. 31, 2012