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Social media prenuptial agreements growing in popularity

We live in an era in which you can do everything online from ordering a pizza to watching a movie to having your taxes done. It should come as no surprise to many Texas residents, then, that the Web is playing an increasingly prominent role in divorce proceedings. The ubiquity and power of the Internet has actually prompted the inclusion of digital clauses in prenuptial agreements that prevent sharing of certain information.

This may sound like a stretch, but just think about this: A husband snaps a photograph of his wife at a dance club while they are on vacation, and he "tags" her when he posts the image to Facebook or Instagram. Perhaps she does not like the way she looks -- or perhaps her profession mandates discretion online. In any event, a social media prenup could cause the man to lose thousands of dollars if he does not remove the picture from the pantheon of the Web.

The social media clauses are gaining traction in a generation that understands the permanence of an online life. Modern prenuptial agreements may stipulate that the spouses cannot post nude or embarrassing photographs that could damage a partner's professional reputation. Financial punishment may be levied against the spouse for failing to comply with the directives in the document.

Ultimately, many couples who have chosen to pursue the social media prenuptial agreement say they are happy that they did so. One pair says they ask each other whether a photograph is "SMP" compliant -- that is, whether it is in line with their social media prenup clause. Including this information in a prenuptial agreement can build trust and prevent future embarrassment.

Source: ABC News, "I Love You, You're Perfect, but Watch What You Facebook: Social Media Prenups" Lauren Effron, Jun. 03, 2014

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