Is There Cause for a Social Media Clause?

Facebook, Twitter, and other social media have infiltrated all facets of life. To get a clear idea of the amount of time people actually spend on social media, consider this.  A website compiling statistics, www.marketingcharts.com, reports the following surprising findings in terms of hours of social media use per day:

▪18-34-year-olds report spending 3.8 hours;

▪35-49-year-olds report spending 3 hours;

▪50-64-year-olds report spending 2.4 hours.

Pretty incredible! So what does this all mean for family law matters?  Keep in mind that romantic involvements are featured prominently on most peoples’ digital profiles.  People have a tendency to chronicle every aspect of their love lives- the dating phase, the gorgeous marriage ceremony, the birth of children, and on and on. So what happens when relationships go sour?  Naturally, people are tempted to share those negative feelings about their partner with their social network. 

During separations and divorces, what you share with your social network could come back to haunt you, so think carefully before bashing your ex-spouse online or (heaven forbid) sharing inappropriate photos gathered during your relationship. By some estimates, social networks are involved in over 80% of divorce proceedings. 

As a direct result of this trend, our attorneys at Smith Strong have noticed a rise in the number of “social media clauses” included in prenuptial agreements.  Essentially, these clauses protect individual wishes regarding how the other spouse can portray him/her on social media outlets during the relationship or in the event of a divorce. An example: “My spouse may not, at any time, post any picture of me that may be considered indecent or revealing on social media.”

If you have the foresight to draft a prenuptial agreement, consider including language related to social media.  At Smith Strong, our skilled attorneys are happy to discuss with you the kind of prenuptial agreement that fits your needs. Call 804.325.1245 (Richmond) or 757.941.4298 (Williamsburg) today to schedule an initial consultation.