Electronically Stored Information (ESI) – Part One – Messages

In an effort to drive home the importance of ESI and how it effects your divorce or child support case, we’re working on a series that breaks it down. Here, we’re discussing sending messages to your future ex and how that can change the outcome of your divorce or child support case.

Hurtful messages

A good rule of thumb that we consistently advise clients with is that anytime you’re sending electronic information whether it be email, text, Facebook messenger, or any other social media platform, it could be potentially read by a judge in regards to your case. Not only could a judge end up reading a nasty message that you’ve written, it could end up hurting you in your divorce or child support case because this sort of information IS discoverable during a case.

Some other things to think about…

If a judge seeing your text, email, or Facebook message isn’t enough to make you reconsider, think about that text and if your kids were to read what you wrote. Makes you think, huh? You would never want your children to read anything nasty that you’ve written about their other parent. So, it’s best to find other ways to release the stress and tension you’re having with your future ex.

Things that can help you not send that nasty message:

  • Have a trusted friend read that text before you hit “send”
  • Write it down on paper to get it all out but don’t type it and save it – that’s still stored information on your phone
  • Reach out to a therapist to get yourself through this hard time and help understand why it is you need to get things out
  • Talk to your attorney. They’re used to hearing this and can help “talk you off a ledge” before you hit “send”

Also, we want to touch on another issue with kids and messages. Please, do not ever, under any circumstance let your child read a text that your future ex has sent you. Time and time again, we see and hear of spouses showing their children a text that was sent in order to get the child “on their side.” This is extremely damaging to a child and keep in mind that you’re not hurting your future ex by doing that, you’re hurting your child and ultimately putting THEM in the middle of your chaos.

If you’ve been harassed by your future ex with ESI, or have more questions on how ESI can hurt your divorce, please reach out to us at 407-757-2883. We truly can help you navigate this confusing part of divorce. We’re #HereForYou.