Electronic Snooping and Your Michigan Divorce

Nearly everyone who gets divorced in Michigan has some experience with electronic communication and social media, from emails and texts to social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. As an article in NPR discusses, "digital spying" has become extremely common in 21st-century divorces, and it is important for parties who are considering divorce to think carefully about how technology may be able to help or harm their divorce cases. More specifically, you should know what you can do when it comes to electronic snooping (and what you cannot do), as well as how to use social media without hurting your divorce case. The following are some things to think about concerning electronic snooping, social media, and your divorce.

Be Wary of Invasive Digital Spying Tools

The article discusses some particularly invasive tools that some people are using for digital spying on their soon-to-be ex-spouses, and these tools are used more frequently than you might think. For example, a surprisingly high number of people who are getting divorced admit to installing GPS trackers in their spouses' smartphones while a divorce is ongoing or installing spyware on computers or smartphones.

Many forms of spyware now come in the form of apps that cost as little as $16.99 per month, and they can provide information about emails a person sends, data typed into search bars, bank logins, and other information. Yet it is important to remember that, even if these kinds of tools are readily available, using them is likely illegal. As such, information obtained through spyware or other digital spying tools should not be admissible in a divorce case. Of course, as the article underscores, the use of these kinds of tools is often less about admissibility in a divorce case and more about control.

Be Careful When it Comes to Social Media

You should avoid the temptation to use digital spying tools, as we discussed above. At the same time, you should also be careful when it comes to what you put on the internet-and especially social media platforms-about yourself. Unlike information obtained from digital spying apps, information that your spouse obtains from public social media pages may be completely admissible in your divorce case.

If possible, you should avoid using social media during your divorce, and you should ensure that others, such as friends and family members, do not have the ability to "tag" you in posts. If you do not feel that you can stay off social media, it is important to curate the language and images you post carefully. You should not post anything that your spouse might try to use against you in court, whether it concerns your income and ability to pay or your fitness as a parent for child custody purposes.

Contact a Divorce Attorney in Michigan

If you have questions or concerns about electronic snooping, digital spying, and social media in your divorce case, you should speak with a divorce attorney in Michigan as soon as possible. An advocate at our firm can talk with you today. Contact the Law Offices of Michael A. Robbins for more information.