So, you want to find out if your spouse is cheating, right? And you’ve decided that a private investigator is too complicated or too expensive. Now what? First you need to know that the Court really doesn’t care if your spouse is cheating, unless it in someway involves a harmful effect on the children OR your spouse is spending money on this fling. Money that the court considers to be half yours. Prove that your spouse is spending money on the “other person” and you may have a valid claim for financial misconduct and retrieve half the money back through an offset. But, for you it isn’t about the money. It’s about knowing for certain, and it’s about proving to yourself and your spouse that, no, you are not crazy (your spouse has been telling you this when you confront him or her with your suspicions), and that your spouse is not “working late”, but is actually on a “date”.
You remember the nights when you woke up to hearing a phone conversation. He/she was on the phone with someone. This happened frequently. You got out of bed and asked your spouse to tell you to whom they were talking. A quick hang up, and a quick comment that it was just business.
Can you put a recording device on your home phone and “catch” your spouse? Or will this be a violation of Federal Wiretapping laws? If you record your spouse’s conversation with another person, and YOU ARE NOT A PARTY TO THE CONVERSATION, then you will be violating Federal wiretapping laws. This means that your spouse has snuck out of the bedroom one night, and secretly called someone. They are chatting away, and without their knowledge there is a recording being made of this call, while you are still in bed waiting to hear the results of your recording efforts. Once your spouse finds out that you recorded this (and of course once you listened to the recording you could not contain yourself and you told him or her in a Perry Mason Ah-Ha moment), your spouse could go after you for statutory damages and could cooperate with officials to impose criminal penalties.
Knowing this, you next decide that you want to purchase a software program to “catch” real time instant messaging on your spouse’s computer, to prove he or she is cheating. This could STILL be considered wiretapping.
Before you consider taking steps to “prove” that your spouse is cheating, talk to your domestic relations attorney!! Remember, that once you have filed for divorce, your attorney has the power of the court to issue subpoenas to your spouse’s credit card companies. A review of credit card statements and phone records as well, may be all the “proof” you need for the next step…emotional healing.