One of the most basic concepts of law is that the parties are made aware,
or given notice, when they are sued. This is called due process and it
is the cornerstone of the American legal system. It goes against everything
we know to allow judgments to be taken against people, or decisions made
in legal proceedings without first giving notice of the action to the
impacted party. But, this might all be changing if a decision by a New
York Judge gets expanded.
The case is being referred to as the "Facebook Divorce". The
decision was that 36 year old
Elanora Baidoo was allowed to serve divorce papers on her husband by private Facebook
message. The Judge reasoned that as long as the message was sent by Baidoo's
attorney, for a predetermined time and at regular interval during that
time, the divorce petition could be considered served. This case involves
unique circumstances in that the couple never lived together after the
wedding and the only form of communication was via Facebook or by phone.
Baidoo was also unable to locate a physical location for her husband and
all of these facts certainly played a role in the Judge's ruling.
But, before you hit send on an email or message sent through social media,
be careful. Unless you can show a compelling reason or reasons for serving
legal papers outside the statutory scheme, you will be required to follow
the rules as we know them. But, regardless of which issue you need assistance
with, your case deserves an individualized approach. We look at the unique
circumstances of your matter and apply the law to those facts accurately.
We also keep you informed every step of the way and explain likely results
so you can make educated decisions.
For more information on enforcement of child support, call an experienced
family law attorney for answers to your questions. We can be reached online at
Call today to schedule an appointment.