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When talking custody, don't forget Facebook

Now, in 2013, it's no secret that online social media can play a big role in a divorce case. What appears on the profile pages of both spouses and their children can cause not only dispute during a divorce case but serious contention long after a settlement has been reached.

Most often such problems arise when information or mention, including photos or video, of a separated couple's children appears on the personal page(s) of a parent without the other's knowledge or consent. For couples separating, including residents of Dallas, setting up legally-defined ground rules for social media conduct that references the kids may solve multiple problems before they start.

As the custody and support of children is usually determined during a divorce and potentially later reformed as needed, a consensual approach to kids' developing online presence should be established. Specific privacy controls that decide which friends and family members can view content are often a firm and agreeable method.

As new networks and more powerful, faster smartphones further the ubiquity of Facebook and similar social outlets, both the management of children's online footprint and the upkeep of parents' own postings should be front and center in a divorce agreement.

Facebook and social media at large is a kind of double-edged sword. Although the heightened connectivity users enjoy can quickly clarify a misunderstanding or maintain a bond across great distances, the myriad approaches and attitudes users adopt can raise eyebrows and alarm, particularly in situations of legal separation and shared child custody.

For high-asset parents who want to make sure their children are properly portrayed on the internet, the counsel of a family law attorney can prove invaluable. Through a proactive and comprehensive approach to the custody and property allocation process, long-term clarity and accountability can be secured.

Source: STL Today, "Who gets custody of the Facebook profile info after a divorce?" Aisha Sultan, Dec. 31, 2012

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Bruce Turner

In addition to his law degree, Bruce Turner has a master's degree in tax law and is Board Certified in Commercial Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

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Bruce Turner with Bennett, Weston LaJone & Turner, P.C.

Attorney Bruce Turner is located in Dallas and represents people and businesses throughout DFW and the Metroplex, including Denton, Carrollton, Lewisville, Flower Mound, Farmers Branch, Irving, Las Colinas, Corinth, Highland Village, The Colony, Plano, Frisco, Allen, McKinney, Mesquite, Grand Prairie, Garland and Grapevine as well as Collin County, Denton County and Dallas County in Texas.

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