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When texting your former spouse is hazardous

On Behalf of | Oct 19, 2016 | Family Law

Chances are that you carry a cell phone around with you wherever you go. That phone allows you to remain connected to friends, to work and to the general world around you. It also helps to ensure that you can be reachable in an emergency. There are unquestionable benefits to having constant access to a cell phone. However, there are also hazards associated with this easy access as well.

For example, having access to an instant communication method makes it more likely that you will place a call or send a text when upset before you have thought that communication through. Have you ever sent a text that you later wished you could take back? If you are in the process of divorcing or are experiencing co-parenting challenges, texting without thinking your communications through could be hazardous to your future.

Think first, text later

You may not be aware of the fact that communications between yourself and your former spouse may be used as evidence in the event of a legal dispute. This is a positive reality if your former spouse has said something suspect to you that can be used to bolster your case. However, if you say something suspect to him or her, that communication may negatively affect a family legal dispute such as property division challenges during divorce or a child custody disagreement.

It is important to understand that even texts, emails, social media posts, etc. that you believe are fairly harmless could be used against you in unexpected ways. For example, if you text your co-parent that you will be taking your child out of school but do not specify your excellent reason for doing so, your co-parent could try to use this text as evidence that you are an irresponsible parent. As a result, it is important to think before you communicate with your former spouse in electronic writing.

If you slip

If you find that you have texted or otherwise communicated with your former spouse in a way that could negatively impact your family legal dispute, it is generally a good idea to share that information with your attorney. Experienced family law attorneys understand which kinds of communications could be potentially harmful. They are also best positioned to handle any potential fallout. And even if your communication is embarrassing, it is likely far better to share it with your attorney rather than risk any potentially negative consequences alone. 

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