19 December 2018

Social Media and Divorce

It may be the last thing on your mind, however we are increasingly seeing a social media aspect to divorce proceedings. Below, we highlight some key points that are worth considering:

• Change your passwords

Throughout your marriage, it’s likely that you may have shared various passwords (computer/social media/phone) with your spouse. If your marriage is coming to an end, it is important to remember to change your passwords as soon as possible to avoid any potential dispute or difficulties in the event that your spouse attempts to gain access to your personal accounts.

Your spouse may also have the password for your email account. Those emails are firstly, your private correspondence and secondly, likely to contain confidential legal advice if you are in the process of separating/divorcing. This could give your spouse an unfair advantage during proceedings.

• Do not try to access your spouse’s personal emails without their permission

As tempting as it may be to browse through your spouse’s emails, it is a crime under the Computer Misuse Act 1990. Even if you do obtain access to your spouse’s emails by unlawful means, your solicitor will not be able to present this information to the Court.

It may be difficult to avoid browsing your spouse’s emails, but it is unlikely to benefit your case and at its worst, it could result in criminal proceedings.

• Check whether your devices are synced

Although syncing devices seems to make life easier, during separation or divorce it is important to consider that your personal text messages or emails from a mobile phone may be synced to a family computer or IPad from another device. Devices may even share your location.

Having separated, you may not want your other half to be able to track your whereabouts.

It is sensible to review the links between your electronic devices, to ensure that any private messages or photos remain private.

For further information contact please contact Andrew Morris on 01242 246 456 or at amorris@hcrlaw.com.

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Andrew Morris, Partner
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