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Is Your Divorce Private?


By their very nature, court proceedings are open to the public and the information disclosed during this time becomes public record. Unless the case concerns minors or victims of sexual abuse, there are little restrictions ensuring that this information is private. Therefore, the only way that a divorce proceeding can be considered private is if one or both of the participants asks the court to seal the records when they are filed to prevent confidential or sensitive information from being released to the public.

Can I hide information in my divorce?

Courts will consider all information revealed in a divorce case to be public unless they are specifically asked to seal the records. However, just because the court has been asked to seal information does not mean they will do so. The judge will determine if there is significant reason why these records should be private. This is done by weighing the difference between what will be gained by closing the records and upholding the presumption of allowing divorce records to be open to public scrutiny.

Some common reasons why divorce records are sealed include:

  • Hiding important business information
  • Protecting the identification of children
  • Keeping sensitive information private
  • Concealing victims of domestic violence
  • Preventing exposure to false allegations

These reasons will be considered next to the value of transparency in courtroom proceedings. If the court decides to seal the divorce records, it will only seal what is considered necessary. The entire divorce record will not be sealed from public record, but only the information that directly affects the privacy of what has been cited. For example, if someone is concerned about their business interests, the only information kept hidden would be that while directly concerns the business.

If you are wondering if your divorce records will be public and how you can seal them, contact an experienced attorney at Mathur Law Offices, P.C..