Marriages Face New Threat: Social Networking

Tharrington Smith family law attorney Alice Stubbs describes how the recent social media phenomenon of social media impacts divorce and family law cases during an interview with WRAL-TV.

“It’s been really an interesting phenomenon,” says divorce attorney Alice Stubbs, of Tharrington Smith LLP in Raleigh. “In the last five years, Facebook, Myspace – all the social networking sites have changed the face of domestic law, and we obtain a lot of evidence from social networking.”

Stubbs and Rosen both say it has become a standard operating procedure for them to check the online presence of their clients’ spouses as well as their clients.

“All sorts of things go on Facebook. There’s real cheating. There’s things that sound like cheating and then there are all sorts of other things like threats, comments that shouldn’t have been made,” Rosen says. “It is a communication device that now has every kind of communication, positive and negative.”

Stubbs says she encourages her clients to remove their online profiles during divorce proceedings.

“Nothing good can come out of that,” she says. “You don’t want personal information to be used against you in court.”

Stubbs says that she has seen in some cases where online relationships can have dramatic effects.

“I’ve even seen cases where someone left the state, quit their job, left their children for a person they have met on Facebook, or maybe reconnected with, but don’t really know,” she says.

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