The short answer is yes, text messages can be used against you in your family law case. While there are rules of evidence that must be followed in order to have text messages formally admitted into evidence at trial or during an evidentiary hearing, text messages, emails, and other messages or posts on social media are often used in family law cases to demonstrate patterns of behavior, certain character traits, or even to establish the occurrence of certain events. These messages may be attached to motions at the outset or during the pendency of your case, they can be used at mediation to entice settlement, and they will almost certainly be used to try to place you in a negative light, if at all possible.

Remember, when people are going through a divorce, or are in the midst of a custody battle or parenting time dispute, they will often use whatever “evidence” they may have in order to bolster their case, or in an attempt to destroy the other party’s character. Do not fall victim to this tactic by sending any text message, email, or posting anything on social media that can be misconstrued or used to attack your character. A mantra I like to instill in my clients is: “text, email, and post on social media as if every word will be read aloud in court someday.”