How can social media affect child custody?

On Behalf of | Sep 28, 2023 | Child Custody, Divorce |

For parents thinking about divorce or going through a divorce, the most contentious part of the divorce process is usually child custody. After all, up until you separated from your soon-to-be ex-spouse, you got to see your kids every day.

However, divorce and separation will stop this, unless you are granted sole custody. That said, even with sole custody, the other parent may still get supervised visits occasionally.

This means a prime worry is how to maximize parenting time and what things, like social media, can affect your current or future child custody battle.

Social media is a double-edged sword

Social media platforms like X (formerly Twitter), Instagram, TikTok, etc. are popular because they allow you to share your life with family and friends. But, anything that you post on social media platforms can also be used as evidence in any court proceeding, including during your divorce.

Social media as a good

This evidence can be used to support your child custody case, like to show that you are a loving, involved and responsible parent. For example, videos and photographs of you spending time with your children, attending their events, etc. can show this and that you have a positive relationship with your child.

Social media as a bad

Conversely, anything that you post that could show you in a negative light could also hurt your child custody case. For example, if you make claims in court, but your social media posts show otherwise, this can damage your credibility and hurt your case. Posting proof of you disobeying or violating a court order could lead to sanctions and other penalties.

If you post illegal or inappropriate activities (drugs, drinking, violence, etc.), it could hurt your case. Similarly, badmouthing the judge, your soon-to-be ex-spouse, etc. could negatively impact your case. Even posts that could be interpreted as showing an unhealthy or unstable environment or lifestyle, or being involved with a new romantic partner, could all be used against you in court.

How can I use social media?

First, review your privacy setting to ensure who can and cannot view your social media. Though, using this as a way to hide bad behavior could fail if it was scrapped by or someone shares the content with your ex. Second, avoid posting anything that could be used against you. Third, make sure your friends and family do not tag you in anything that could hurt your case. Finally, monitor your kid’s social media usage as well. Indeed, it may be a better idea to stop posting all together, or to deactivate or delete your social media accounts.



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