Anyone wanting to know whether your social media posts could be used as evidence in your divorce should be following recent news. You would learn that Kanye West’s social media posts would likely become probative exhibits in Kanye’s divorce and child custody case.
Kardashian, 41, filed for divorce from West, 44, in February 2021 after seven years of marriage. The two share four children together.
Some news outlets have been reporting that West has been going after Kardashian’s new boyfriend, Pete Davidson, in a flurry of Instagram posts, which Kanye later tries to delete.
Kanye has also shared text messages from Kardashian on his account and speaks about their divorce on the social media app.
When it comes to the divorce proceedings, social media posts are “fair game” and can be used in custody battles. Kanye West’s rants about his divorce could hurt his arguments on any custody and other parenting issues since he is clearly willing to put his own needs to express his feelings over their best interests
Florida Social Media and Divorce
I’ve written about the widespread use of social media in society, and how that impacts family law cases – especially when it comes to authenticating documents in a divorce court.
Some exhibits are so trustworthy they don’t even require a witness to authenticate. Evidence Rule 201 lists matters which a court must judicially notice, meaning a judge does not have discretion but to admit indisputable evidence.
The list is short and includes laws of the Congress and Florida Legislature; Florida statewide rules of court, rules of United States courts, and U.S. Supreme Court rules.
Rule 202 includes even more matters, but also provides judges leeway in deciding whether or not to take judicial notice. For example, the statute allows a court to take judicial notice of facts that are not subject to dispute because they are “generally known within the territorial jurisdiction of the court”, and facts that are not subject to dispute because they are “capable of accurate and ready determination by resort to sources whose accuracy cannot be questioned.”
But with the widespread use of fake social media accounts, you have to start to wonder whether the genuineness assumption of evidence in family court still stands. Anyone can set up a fake Kanye Instagram account.
The increasing use of electronic evidence at trial, and the ease with which it is impersonated and manipulated, pressures us to bolster foundational evidence more than ever.
Divorce proceedings typically entail a decision on custody, although Kardashian and West have agreed on joint custody of their children to date. However, if there were to be a custody battle, social media posts that don’t foster a healthy parent-child relationship could affect a judge’s decision.
Some social media posts can reflect a parent’s failure to facilitate and encourage a
close and continuing parent-child relationship with the other parent and that can impact the court’s ultimate determination of shared parental responsibility and timesharing.
Criticizing the other parent’s parenting, disparaging on social media a parent’s new significant other, especially when children are old enough to access and read social media, does not help facilitate a close and continuing parent-child relationship.
If one parent is disparaging the other parent on social media, that could be used as proof that Kanye, for example, is not willing to facilitate a close relationship between the children and Ms. Kardashian when he is with the children.
For his part, West has addressed criticism from many that he was attempting to besmirch Kardashian by divulging private messages and maintained that he has owned up to the mistake and is learning to better manage his impulses.
“Thank everybody for supporting me,” West recently wrote. “I know sharing screen shots was jarring and came off as harassing Kim. I take accountability. I’m still learning in real time. I don’t have all the answers. To be good leader is to be a good listener.”
In a separate post, West, also known as “Ye,” shared a screenshot of a comment that read: “That’s what a real man does; fight for your family Ye.”
“THANK YOU GUYS FOR YOUR SUPPORT OF MY FAMILY,” West wrote for his 12.6 million followers. “MY FAMILY MEANS MORE TO ME THAN ANY OTHER ACCOMPLISHMENT IN LIFE.”
Kim could try asking the court for a gag order restricting both parties from airing their grievances publicly during the divorce, but free speech is valued in this country.
The FOX news article is here.