Tuesday, June 16, 2009

What Rule of Evidence Governs This?

This week's TIME magazine has an excellent and entertaining piece called "Facebook and Divorce: Airing the Dirty Laundry."

Among other things, the article says:

For those who want to connect or reconnect with others, social-networking sites are a huge, glorious honeypot. But for those who are disconnecting, they can make things quite sticky. And as the age of online-social-network users creeps up, it overlaps more with the age of divorce-lawyer users, resulting in the kind of semipublic laundry-airing that can turn aggrieved spouses into enraged ones and friends into embarrassed spectators.

Lawyers, however, love these sites, which can be evidentiary gold mines. Did your husband's new girlfriend Twitter about getting a piece of jewelry? The court might regard that as marital assets being disbursed to a third party. Did your wife tell the court she's incapable of getting a job? Then your lawyer should ask why she's pursuing job interviews through LinkedIn.

Having represented a divorcing spouse who was able to force a settlement because her partner was a bit too "candid" on MySpace, I concur wholeheartedly in the article's warnings. Be careful out there in cyberspace . . .

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