Facebook Status Alters Custody Agreement

St. Petersburg Times — One law firm has had enough.

Back in the dark ages, like 2005, lawyers had to spend money, time and effort to glean juicy morsels for their cases. A basic custody battle could mean a maze of private investigators, subpoenas and conversations with neighbors.

Now it’s like this: Open browser. Click. Gasp. Print.

“Clients who have participated in social media have become much more vulnerable,” said Joseph Cordell, partner in national law firm Cordell & Cordell. “You have access to inner thoughts and frank conversations that in the past were virtually unheard of.”

GPS tracking features on Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare help when people take their children on the run, said Cordell, whose firm has an office in Tampa. One client’s ex-wife had moved her children to eight different locations, he said.

But pictures are the biggest tell. One woman showed up online snorting cocaine off of a key, he said. Another held a bottle of Grey Goose vodka in one hand and a baby in the other.

During one custody battle, a mother posted photos of her children. A friend commented.

The children don’t look much like him.

The mother replied.

That’s because they’re not his.

Read more: Facebook flubs make for salacious divorce case.