Family Law and Social Media
Social Media Feuds: How It Can Affect Your Family Law Matter
Almost 11 Million Australians will use Facebook over the course of 2019. Like most people, Facebook is used as a platform to share your thoughts and experiences or listen to others. As such, it is not uncommon to across someone who has a frustrated or even angry view on a particular event or experience. Whilst this is often though of as a cathartic process, your electronic communications can easily be viewed and used against you in the Family Court.
Commonly, the Family Court has increasingly accepted electronic material into evidence, such as messenger phone records, Facebook posts, and social media photos. This evidence is typically in support of demonstrating a person’s pattern of behaviour, displaying certain language or demeanour towards another person, or infer certain events occurring.
In a recent parenting matter, the Family Court accepted into evidence a Facebook photograph which was posted by the Father to the proceedings. This photo evidenced the Father taking his child to the beach during his contact time. However, there were Court Orders in place with restrained the Father from leaving his home with the child during his time with them. A mutual friend of the Mother saw the photo and provided it to the Mother. This photo was then accepted into evidence in support of an Application of Contravention of Court Orders.
To protect your privacy and prevent others from using social media platforms against you, we suggest that you:
- Update your password so you are the only person with access;
- Check your privacy settings on social media;
- Ensure your device is not linked to another;
- Do not post or message content you would not like the Court to see;
- Do not use social media in anger, hatred, or frustration; and
- Consider deactivating or preventing your social media use during Family Court proceedings
or other legal disputes.
If you would like further information or are seeking to advise on family law issues, please contact one of our accredited specialists on 1800 662 535 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org