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Child Custody and Social Media

Child Custody and Social Media

Child custody battles can be very intense. People will say hurtful things and express hostility towards their spouses or soon-to-be exes. No parent is perfect and no matter how hard you try, you will miss the mark. While children can be forgiving, your ex won’t and he or she will use every argument possible, including social media conversations, to win the child custody battle. Some divorcees find themselves in argumentative and legally risky situations due to details posted in Social Media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. It doesn’t matter how delicate your situation is, a Salt Lake City child custody attorney can keep you afloat and help you find the peace of mind you and your family deserve during the divorce process.

Should You Delete Your Posts?

Why is that? It can be used against you in court. Deleting evidence means you are concealing it and this is called spoliation. Even when the evidence on the post is not that crucial, it’s still best you keep the post as originally published. The court may argue that the reason why the evidence was deleted is because it didn’t support your case. Also, some sanctions may apply and you may end up paying your ex-spouse’s attorney fees. In conclusion, don’t deactivate any social media accounts or delete publications. If you already have, talk to your Salt Lake City child custody attorney.

Conversations With The Other Parent

This is something that may help you in court, especially if your ex said things that may advance your divorce or child custody case. It’s tempting to be upset and reply to the hurtful comments but rather keep calm and save the evidence. Screenshots work just fine. E-mail them to your attorney and he or she will figure out what to do with it. Remember your ex may delete these posts or comments later on and you will have no way to prove the things said unless you saved the conversations or comments. Your ex may argue in court that you have not been very cooperative during the child custody process but if you have a history of reaching out and cooperating, whether online or in the text, you have more chances of discrediting these fallacious arguments. It never hurts saving this info in a computer folder.

Don’t Bribe Your Child

Let the Court decide what’s best for the children. When you get involved by offering parenting concessions for your financial advantage, the Court may think you are bribing your ex. Don’t promise or demand anything in writing, especially related to your finances. Some parents agree to child custody matters as long as the other partner accepts their financial demands. It doesn’t work that way. An attorney will help negotiate a just settlement in a more civilized manner.

Please Stay Calm

When the child custody battle gets intense to try to stay calm and limit your communication with your ex. Request that all communication is conducted in writing. Act in a friendly manner even if you feel like yelling. The picture and information you share on your posts should be friendly. Social media has become a place for people to vent but it should not be that way. It’s not good displaying your private life out there, especially if you are involved in a difficult child custody battle.

What to Do When a Step Parent Shows Up

Marriages involving children from previous marriages can be challenging. Although stepparents don’t have a legal responsibility for their stepchildren, they often spend the most time with them. Couples with young children particularly will struggle at first to bond with stepchildren. But what happens when your ex remarries after a divorce? Will the new mom or dad have any rights to your children? Will they have to provide child support too? These are issues you should discuss with a Salt Lake City family law attorney.

What About Child Support?

When a parent decides to remarry, the new spouse’s income is not considered when calculating child support. Although it may come as second nature, stepparents are not obligated to provide for stepchildren. Just keep in mind, the ex-spouse can still petition to modify the amount of child support. The judge may consider other factors, besides the income, to modify child support payments. For instance, perhaps you have debts your new spouse is willing to pay and these debts were the cause of a lower child support in the past. This can be the basis of your ex-spouse’s requesting in court that your payments will increase.

What About Custody?

Non-custodial parents will continue with the same custodial arrangements when they remarry since they are not the child’s primary home. Nevertheless, custodial parents may have the ex-spouse seeking to modify the custody arrangement, especially when the stepparent exhibits abusive behavior. Even when circumstances such as abusive behavior are not present, the court may still modify the custody arrangement.

What About Federal Student Loans?

For grown up children, the stepparent income needs to be submitted on their FAFSA when they submit their financial aid application for college. This will apply only to noncustodial parents even in circumstances when the stepparent signed an agreement freeing him or her from any financial responsibilities with the stepchildren.

Stepparent Rights

Stepparents don’t have any legal rights to obtain the custody of your children. It’s the biological parent the one entitled to such rights. However, there are some rare circumstances when the stepparent may obtain child custody such as when adopting stepchildren or when biological parents are unfit to raise their children.

Free Consultation with Child Custody Lawyer

If you have a question about child custody question or if you need help with custody, please call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will aggressively fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506