A divorce is not an easy thing to deal with, and it can be tougher when you think your spouse is cheating on you. Knowing for sure is important because that will give you the information to decide whether to end things with your spouse. There are ways to find out if your spouse is cheating, but one of the most effective is wiretapping a phone. The question is, should you be doing that?

There are many ways to “tap” the phone of your spouse. Cell phones come with cameras, video cameras, GPS trackers and more. You can record voices and you can know where you spouse is with the right software. In addition, you can go old school with a tape recorder, or you can bug a room with a variety of methods that you can learn about and purchase online.

When you are thinking about wiretapping a phone, can what you learn be used as evidence? Evidence of cheating can have a big impact on the proceedings, especially in terms of alimony and who is going to be the supporting spouse. It should also be stated, though, that a lot of the evidence you will get is circumstantial, and some courts won’t allow you to use it. That being said, having that evidence can force your spouse to move through the divorce proceedings quickly, and it can be used to your advantage in a custody situation. Having the evidence of the affair will give you the leverage you need, and it can be very valuable to you in a divorce.

The next question: is it illegal to record your spouse? There are laws that prohibit recording and spying on your spouse. Federal law does not allow you to intercept or gain unauthorized access to types of information. This includes wire, oral and electric communication, as well as communication held in electronic storage. As for state laws, it will depend on the state you are in. Most will Follow federal law and not allow most types of recording of someone without their knowledge.

This also applies with recording someone with a tape recorder. In this case, you can’t put a tape recorder in a car and catch a conversation between your spouse and their lover. This is because most states need one-party consent. So, if you record yourself talking to your spouse, that is legal, but it also won’t do much good if they won’t admit the affair on the tape.

Can you record your spouse’s phone conversations though? Once again, the rules are usually along the lines of one-party consent. If one party knows that there is a recording happening, then it is legal. As such, it would be illegal for you to record a phone conversation between your spouse and their lover. Going onto the cell phone and snooping is a bit of a grey area. You need authorization to use the phone under the law, and you may have that with your spouse who provided the password, but what you learn may not be used in court.

Video recordings of your spouse are actually allowed, but they can’t have any audio in them. That is why you see nanny cams that have no sound, because video recording is allowed but audio is not.

What about going into an e-mail account? Well, you can’t go onto a work computer of your spouse because her employer has not granted you access to that computer. Same goes for guessing the password of your spouse to get into their computer or e-mail account; you do not have authorization for this. Even if you have authorization to go onto the computer, it does not mean that you can go looking through the computer to find evidence.

You can look on Facebook on your spouse’s public posts, but you can’t log into their account and look at their messenger conversations. Using GPS to track your spouse is also not allowed.

If you do any of these things, make sure you don’t alter e-mails, that you provide printouts of what you see, but also be prepared for objections in court and for questions asking why you went into the email and how authentic it is.