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Property division can be impacted by online dating website

Sometimes, dating while going through divorce, or soon after divorce, can be a helpful mental escape from the emotional challenges of the dissolution of the marriage. However, when it comes to dating websites, caution is necessary. In some cases, information on one spouse's profile in Pennsylvania actually ends up harming his or her divorce case when dealing with issues such as property division.

According to a survey by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, over 50 percent of attorneys who took part in the survey -- 59 percent -- stated that they had seen a rise in the usage of evidence from online dating sites during the past few years. The top site for this type of evidence was determined to be Match.com, with more than 60 percent of cases pulling evidence from it. The next-popular site for gathering evidence was eHarmony, at 9 percent.

In general, one should avoid dating websites until the divorce dust has fully settled. In addition, not hiding assets is critical. In some cases where information from online dating sites have been used in court, one spouse downplayed his or her income and assets in court while showing them off online. In opposite cases, a spouse inflated his or her income online, thus sparking the other spouse's demand for an audit to see if there really are hidden assets.

Being honest during a divorce proceeding -- both in court and online -- is critical when tackling matters such as property division and spousal support. If possible, spouses who are getting divorced in Pennsylvania may want to try mediation rather than going to trial, as this alternative to divorce tends to be more amicable and private. However, an attorney can help with making sure that one's desires are pursued either at the negotiation table or at trial.

Source: goodmenproject.com, "Why Your Divorce Attorney Wants You to Stay Off Dating Websites", Bari Zell Weinberger, April 28, 2017

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