Tampa Divorce Lawyer

Can I  Legally Investigate My Spouse’s Infidelity?

Suspecting a spouse of cheating can be an emotionally painful experience that may influence you to act irrationally. Although you may feel justified to do everything to catch and then punish your spouse, this may lead to legal trouble for you later. If you act in ways that are unlawful, you may expect serious consequences.

Recovering Text Messages

Technological innovations like smartphones give us the ability to sleuth effectively. Certain apps on your phone can download text messages onto a computer for viewing or even pull up previously deleted messages. WHile you are able to do this, it may be illegal if you do not own the phone. In some cases, the texts are inadmissible in court, so even if they divulge that your spouse cheated, it will not exonerate you from an unlawful act.

Wiretapping a Phone Line

An attempt to record phone conversations without the knowledge of your spouse could be considered a criminal and/or civil offense. Some states require just one person’s consent while other states require both people on the call to consent to recording. If you were not part of the telephone conversation at all, then your recording may be considered inadmissible.

Accessing Email Accounts

Criminal charges may apply to accessing a spouse’s email account without their consent. It can be quite easy these days to figure out how to get in, but you must realize that the consequences could be steep.

Using a GPS Tracker

A GPS tracker may give you the answers you are looking for, but it may also put you at risk for a criminal charge. Under community property aw, you do not have any legal rights to tamper with a spouse’s vehicle by installing a GPS tracker.


Both spouses in a divorce proceeding must follow state and federal privacy laws–if a spouse tries to gather information illegally, then the other spouse can file criminal or civil charges against them. Even if you weren’t aware of the laws prior to the acts, it doesn’t mean you are absolved of liability. Before you begin gathering evidence of infidelity, consult a divorce attorney Austin, TX trusts to prevent from facing further charges outside divorce court. Your attorney can even help you gather evidence legally so that you may have a strong base of evidence in divorce court. Rest assured that you will likely facing criminal and civil charges against you should you act alone.

Thank you to our friends and contributors at The Law Office of Ryan S. Dougay for their insight into divorce and family law.