If you use Facebook, you are among the majority of the American public. According to various sources, 58 percent of all Americans have a Facebook account, and 71 percent of Americans who are online use the site. This dwarfs use of other social media platforms (Pinterest and LinkedIn tie for a distant second at just 28 percent). If you are a frequent user, have you considered how Facebook may be impact your marriage – or your divorce? From a legal perspective, it could have more of an impact than you might think.
Facebook as Grounds for DivorceAccording to a study conducted in Great Britain earlier this year, one third of all divorce petitions mention Facebook. The study also found that 25 percent of married couples argue about each other’s social media use at least once a week, and 17 percent argue about it every single day. In the U.S., mentions of Facebook and other social media use in divorce petitions are on the rise as well. While Florida is a “no-fault” divorce state (meaning that you do not need to specify a reason in order to file for divorce), spouses typically have a trigger – or series of triggers – that compels them to file. More and more frequently, these triggers are coming about through social media. For example, people have filed for divorce as a result of:
- Their spouse sending intimate or inappropriate messages to others through Facebook
- Fighting with their spouse on Facebook
- Facebook “friends” reporting a spouse’s inappropriate comments or unacceptable behavior