Florida Courts may treat Social Media Accounts as Property in a Divorce subject to being divided like any other property. Many people may have accounts with social media services, such as Facebook or Twitter, neglecting to account for social media information during a divorce could lead to unfortunate outcomes. This is because, in Florida, such accounts may be held as property and divided between spouses in divorce proceedings. Whether it’s for work purposes, to keep in touch with friends, or to post photographs of daily life, there are a number of social media services available that allow individuals to share their lives with the world. While the courts may split the account between the spouses, there are some ways to protect your personal information from the effects of a divorce.
Marital Settlement Agreement and Social Media Accounts
When dividing property in divorce proceedings, the court is generally bound by the letter of the law. As such, the court is typically limited in the type of assistance it provides when dividing property. While the court’s judgment is the final say on what must be done in a divorce, it is possible for parties to a divorce to agree upon certain aspects of a divorce outside of court. One of the primary benefits to an out-of-court agreement is that, unless it violates public policy, the parties to a divorce will be able to craft their own outcome, incorporating creative solutions to potentially complex situations.
In fact, parties may even agree to include a clause dealing with social media accounts. When crafting a social media clause, it is important to be specific, describing any accounts owned between the parties, and how they will be divided. While this can be problematic, since many parties post personal information, such as family photos or documents on their social media accounts, it is possible to include provisions that allow a spouse to have access to the previously posted information, even if he does not have access to the account.
Property, however, is not the only concern in a divorce. Unfortunately, divorce can be an emotional process, and many individuals can be tempted to try and hurt or embarrass the other party through social media. Posting personal information can not only negatively impact a person’s relationships with friends or family, it can also impact their employment opportunities. Fortunately, parties to a divorce may agree to refrain from engaging in such behavior, and may even include penalties, such as a fine, within the clause.
Protecting your Social Media Accounts Information
While the court is one way to protect your social media information, it can be limited in its approach. This is because, in a marriage, people may share many things as they build a life together, including passwords, pin numbers, and other sorts of personal information. One of the primary ways that you can provide protection for yourself and your social media information is to change all passwords for personally owned social media accounts.
While passwords are a big concern, with the growing nature of social media in our lives today, there are additional concerns that people might not immediately think of when they are going through a divorce. For example, some services, such as Facebook, provide ways for individuals to allow other people to have access to their accounts after they die. While some spouses may choose their significant other as the “legacy contact,” a divorce can change things, and account owners will need to manually update the contact information in order to better protect personal information.
Contact an Orlando Divorce Attorney
Navigating the nuances of a divorce can be confusing and stressful. Fortunately, you do not need to go through the divorce process alone. If you are in need of divorce legal counseling or advice in Orlando, then contact a dedicated, skilled Florida attorney at The Law Office of Natalie D. Hall, PA, for a case evaluation.