How Social Media Can Impact Complex Divorce Issues

Social media has transformed how people communicate on a daily basis, and it stands to reason that it will eventually impact legal proceedings as well. Illinois couples may have heard of the divorce case in another state in which a woman was granted special permission to serve her husband divorce papers through a Facebook private message. This move was a unique solution to certain complex divorce issues.

The woman had exhausted virtually every available option by which to contact her husband and serve divorce papers. He had no available address and no known employment. He did not respond to any effort to contact him. After appealing to a judge, the woman was granted permission to send a Facebook message with divorce papers attached, after which she must attempt to follow up with him for three weeks. This landmark ruling, a response to extenuating circumstances, illustrates how social media has impacted virtually every part of life.

Legal experts agree that allowing social media to play an important role in the divorce process will bring certain complications that must be considered on a case-by-case basis. For Illinois individuals facing a seemingly impassable roadblock in their divorce may consider seeking a legal opinion regarding how they should move forward. It is possible that a creative solution exists that allows the divorce to proceed.

Divorces involve complicated issues such as child custody, financial support and division of property. An individual may face a particularly complex situation if the other spouse is unresponsive or is unable to be located. Using Facebook as a means to resolve some of these complications is not generally permissible at this point, but this case does serve as a reminder that a person may be able to resolve certain complex divorce issues with the help of a knowledgeable legal team.

Source:, “Getting Divorced In The Facebook Era“, Lauren C. Williams, April 10, 2015