According to a recent study, Facebook is becoming a major factor in divorce cases in the UK, with the social networking site being cited in 33 per cent of behaviour petitions in 2011 – a hefty jump from the 13 per cent of cases in 2009.
The figures come from UK divorce website Divorce-Online, which carried out a survey of 5,000 petitions in 2009 and 2011.
A third of all cases from this year were found to mention Facebook, with the site being most commonly used to support allegations that a spouse was getting inappropriately jiggy with the opposite sex online (we’re paraphrasing a tad here).
Spreading the dirt
Spouses also got busy on their ex-partners Facebook profiles after they’d separated, apparently slapping up inappropriate or damaging comments on their public wall.
Some of the reasons for citing Facebook in behaviour petitions were “inappropriate messages to members of the opposite sex”, “separated spouses posting comments about each other”, and “Facebook friends reporting spouse’s behaviour”.
Think before you update!
Mark Keenan, spokeschappie for Divorce-Online, served up some sage suggestions for couples currently undertaking divorce proceedings:
People need to be careful what they put on Facebook as the courts are now seeing a lot more evidence being introduced from people’s walls and posts in disputes over finances and children.
Although Facebook is clearly now becoming the go-to place for divorce action, it looks like relationships are safe on Twitter, with the micro-blogging site only being mentioned in 20 petitions out of the 5,000 (a mere 0.4 per cent).