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Could I use my ex's messages through a social media talking about him using drugs against him through court for a custody case?

Phoenix, AZ |

I found messages on his Facebook with drug use. He doesn't know I still know his password from when we were dating when he gave me it. I want to start a custody case against him and was wondering if I could use this as evidence that he has not changed and, potentially, not a fit father. Would it backfire against me if I presented this? I've heard it's illegal but my ex did give me the password willingly. He blatantly said the drug he had taken was LSD and in other messages he talks about wanting to get high. To clarify these messages were sent to a friend of his and not to me.

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Attorney answers 4


Whether content from Facebook can be used as evidence is a hotly debated topic in the current legal landscape.

You should consult with a lawyer in your state to discuss how Arizona's rules of evidence treat social media. Admissibility is a very complicated issue, and I don't recommend trying to figure it out on your own.


If it can be authenticated, probably yes - but you should contact a local attorney familiar with the rulings of your judge to be more certain.

Under the rules governing the conduct of attorneys in New York it may be necessary to remind you that this answer could be considered attorney advertising.


All information regarding the fitness of a parent is something that can be presented to the court. Evidence to support that is something you want to discuss with your attorney.


If you have a lawyer, ask them; if you don't - the worst thing the judge can likely do is not allow the matter into court, so there is no harm in trying from that end. I'd be a bit concerned about admitting under oath that you used his password to gain access to an account belonging to him without his permission, as I don't know if you'd be opening another can of worms.

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