Privacy in Divorce Cases? FAQs
In high conflict cases where custody of the minor children and/or dispute of finances are at issue, some spouses take extraordinary measures to obtain information from the other side. The issue of expectation of privacy in a divorce case can be quite complex. The following are questions that may arise during a high conflict divorce:
Question: If my spouse records my telephone conversations without my knowledge or consent can
he use those recordings against me in our divorce case?
Answer: No. Under Florida Law the intentional recording or wire taping without a warrant or consent of the parties is considered illegal.
Question: Can photographs and video images taken of me by my spouse without my knowledge be used against me in my divorce?
Answer: In most cases, yes. The photographs and video images have to be relevant to the issues of your divorce case. Next, so long as the recordings or photographs do not reveal the content of the conversation, it is admissible. However, not all oral communications are protected. There has to be a reasonable expectation of privacy.
Question: My spouse broke into my email account and intends to use some of the emails he obtained against me in Court. Can he use this against me in our divorce proceedings?
Answer: It depends. If during your marriage you both had equal access to this email account and you both used this account and both had access to the password, then he could argue that your expectation of privacy was low, and that the emails should be used as evidence. In this scenario, if the emails are relevant to the divorce case, the Court may allow those to be introduced into evidence. However, if the email account is in your name, your spouse never had access to the account and he broke into your account using some type of computer related spying device, the emails would likely be excluded and could be viewed as illegally obtained information by the Court. Simply put, any time a spouse attempts to intercept email communications or access the other parties’ computer without the other spouses permission, they could risk criminal charges.
Question: My spouse has sent emails and text to me directly. Can I use these as evidence in our divorce case?
Answer: Yes. If relevant to your case, any emails or texts either party sends to the other will be admissible in Court.
Question: I think my spouse is hiding assets and money, can I hire a private detective to find out what she is hiding?
Answer: Always speak to an attorney before you hire a private detective or any third party to follow or spy on your spouse as there could be possible severe ramifications if done contrary to the laws in your state.
If you may be considering filing for divorce in Florida or require legal assistance in other areas of Family Law feel free to contact Patricia Palma, owner of The Law Offices of Patricia Palma, P.A. to discuss the details of your case. Ms. Palma can be reached by phone at 813-258-3211.
The information in this blog is not legal advice. Legal advice is dependent upon the specific circumstances of each situation. Therefore, the information in this blog cannot replace the advice of competent legal counsel licensed in your state.