We’ve posted several blogs about celebrity divorces as well as several about how social media can affect a family law case. There is a recent divorce case in the tabloids that combines the two. ‘Burn Notice’ Star Seth Peterson – Check Out the 22-Year-Old I’m Banging…NOT My Pregnant Wife, tmz.com, January 9, 2014. The pregnant wife of “Burn Notice” star Seth Peterson just filed for divorce, claiming her husband was cheating on her with a 22 year old. Rather than denying the affair, Peterson has posted pictures of himself and his girlfriend all over social media. Specially, his girlfriend posted pictures of the two together with captions indicating that they are, in fact, a couple.
This is a perfect example of how social media can hurt you in a divorce case as Peterson has now admitted the affair and there is photographic evidence of the two together. Peterson’s wife is asking for spousal support and full legal and physical custody of the children. If this case were in Georgia, the Judge would look at the best interests of the children in determining custody. Peterson’s actions regarding this affair would come into play, especially if the children have been or could be exposed to any of it. In addition, in Georgia, his actions could impact equitable division. Under equitable division, the Judge looks at all aspects of the case, including the actions of the parties, and marital assets are divided equitably, not necessarily equally. Peterson could, thus, be looking at a lesser portion of the marital estate. Further, if this case were in Georgia, his actions would prohibit him from receiving spousal support from his wife. He may not be seeking alimony from her, but it is important to point out.
The lesson to take away from this case is stay away from social medial during your divorce. If you want to still post things to Facebook, make sure they cannot be used against you in any way in your case. If you are unsure, ask your attorney.