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Top Technology Troubles in Family Law Cases

Be Aware of Top Technology Troubles in Southlake Divorce, Family Law & Estate Planning 

Technology troubles in Southlake divorce go beyond keeping track of all the usernames and passwords, and as we raise our awareness of the pitfalls of technology, we should all recognize our efforts and contributions to our permanent records. From the text we sent in anger to the tweet about the neighbor, everything we say can be used in and out of context to make us look like the best or worst person and parent.

As family law specialists, Barrows Firm in Southlake has dealt with countless family law cases involving technology troubles and has put together a list of top technology troubles in Texas divorce, child custody and estate planning. Technology is a powerful tool, but let's not forget how big of a digital footprint we leave with emails, social media posts and online activity.  


Top Technology Troubles in Southlake Divorce, Child Custody & Estate Planning:  

1.     Text Messaging and Email Communication: Beware the Pitfalls

Text messages and emails can and will be use das evidence to benefit one’s character or to otherwise be detrimental and attacking. How big and bad the fight gets depends on how much money people want to spend on litigating claims and defenses. And when the other side is the one driving the litigation bus, it can be easy to get run over and thrown under the bus. Managing the outcome of litigation when there is much that has been said is something that requires a sophisticated high-stakes divorce lawyer on your side. We explore these issues in our article, Computers, Hard Drive, and Technology Issues in Texas Divorce


2.     Social Media Content that Tells a Story - Can it Be Twisted?

Who doesn’t try to make themselves look good online? Many of us spend significant time and resources building and managing our brand in business and social life. Nowadays it becomes important to be visible and active online. Among other coworkers, neighbors, and parents, we all tell our stories and tales of life, trying to be relatable. But what happens when our posts are used against us? How do we establish our true needs when we worked so hard making it look like we already had everything? Technology troubles in Texas divorce become challenging when social media content tells a story subject to differing interpretations. 


3.     Digital Assets and Discovery in Divorce and Estate Planning

When you are planning a divorce or estate planning strategy, think about all the places we log in and have a username and password. If something happens to you, what do you want to happen to your Facebook page? Do you care if it remains or is deleted, and who gets to do it? What if there is a will contest down the line and someone uses a social media post to prove their claims that you lacked consent when updating your will while on vacation and your attorney was not made aware, and that attorney has the last copy of the will on file in their office? 


4.     Using and Failing to Properly Use Our Family Wizard, Support Pay & Other Apps

The technology works when it works for you, but when others fail or refuse to participate, the Court can get involved. Technology troubles in Texas divorce and child custody include parents who refuse to use the apps the Court orders us to use to communicate. Support Pay is an app for managing child support, payments, and shared expenses. Our Family Wizard is an app for co-parenting and child custody information sharing and visitation exchanges. These apps can work well when everyone is on board and uses those apps. Sometimes there is a reason the other side is not using the app, and that can lead to problems. 


5.     Co-Parenting and Monitoring Children Online: Family Digital Policies  

Are the kids online? Do they have their own devices? Do both parents have access and control of the children and their technology profiles? When people divorce and have young children, their technology might not yet be an issue, but as they grow older, parents must take notice and be proactive about social media and all the information children can find on the Internet. There are all kinds of challenges facing parents when technology troubles challenge children as well as parents. Knowing who kids are talking to and what they are up to requires parental oversight and that is an important element of parenting that must be discussed when there is a disconnect, your lawyer may need to get involved. 

Divorce and Family Law Issues are Complex and Require Sophisticated Lawyers

Divorce cases are more complex and there is more at stake because of technology, so hire the best divorce lawyer you can find. High net worth divorces, and family law cases must be managed with an appropriate litigation strategy. Even when planning to settle most issues in mediation, there are complex financial and property issues to resolve. An experienced divorce litigator is necessary to manage case strategy and bring in the necessary experts to prove the allegations in divorce suits. 

Technology troubles in Texas divorce cases can fill bankers’ boxes of evidence that may be presented at hearings and trials. If there are fault grounds that lead to a greater share of the marital estate, technology can become a powerful tool and people learn quickly how much of a footprint they have online and in their communities. 

Barrows Firm: Using Infidelity as Leverage in Divorce in Texas

Child Custody Litigation: Don’t Tweet Yourself into a Corner

Both parents frequently find themselves to be the best choice as the primary parent, and we remember that if they were able to resolve disputes amicably, we would not be in child custody litigation in the first place. And when in divorce court, everything ever said, posted, and uploaded can be used against you and your credibility before the judge, jury, or any number of parenting facilitators, coordinators, and mental health professionals involved in your suit. 

The good thing is that the judge has heard it all before, for most cases, and the worst we fear that may come out is probably not going to be remembered or memorialized. The best strategy is to identify the worst things you think you’ve done or said, and how the other parent may be coming for you. That way your child custody lawyer can help strategize and create the right focus on actual issues and what is in the best interests of the children. 

Hiding and burying that we don’t want to come to light, is the bigger source of technology troubles in a Texas divorce when the other side knows what you’ve said and done, and they have a way to find and spotlight your attempts to hide and cover things up. Read our recent article about these issues:  Computers, Hard Drives, and Technology Issues in Texas Divorce

Estate Planning Among Digital Asset and Currency Advancements

Technology affects financial planning and wealth management. Digital assets and currencies present new challenges for family estate planning. And when people are recently divorced or have another significant life-changing event going on, technology awareness and comfort must be managed appropriately. Electronic records and files stored online and on mobile devices and computers are digital assets that must be noted in a digital estate plan. 

Consider email accounts, social media, online banking, cloud-based media storage, online dating, utilities, and other apps that contain all kinds of information and are valuable assets and need consideration and recognition in our Power of Attorney documents, wills, and trusts. 

Barrows Firm Blog: Estate Planning in Texas: Frequently Asked Questions