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The most important concept to understand about text messages is that the content of text messages (i.e., the message communicated by one person to another through a cell phone) is only kept by the cell carrier for two to three days. This provides a very limited time frame to obtain the data from the carrier directly.
Moreover, carriers often rely on the federal Stored Communications Act to refuse to comply with state court-issued subpoenas. Federal law requires the cell phone subscriber consent to the request before a carrier is obliged to provide any information.
Also, if you are given a subpoena to show up and testify at court you must comply with the courts orders.
Non-party's records may be subpoenaed in a divorce case so long as there is some relevance to the records. In an uncontested case, a settlement agreement is filed with the divorce papers and no discovery is done. If a divorce is filed without an agreement, and a non-party's records are subpoenaed, the records can be considered by the court to show a pattern of conduct of a party after the separation that might shed light on conduct or intent prior to the separation. It may prove useful to secure a settlement, because you never know how a judge or jury may react. It depends on the facts of each case. I have found it very difficult to obtain the actual texts through subpoenaing records. Instead, the party should subpoena the SD card on the phone--that is where the texts are. Either way, you should consult an attorney to discuss the particular facts and how it could affect the divorce.
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