How Social Media Usage Can Affect Your Personal Injury Claim
If you have been injured in an auto accident, you will want to refrain from posting on your social media profiles about the accident. As soon as a claim for damages is made by you or your attorney, the insurance companies spring into action. They will spare no expense and will do just about anything to make sure you get paid as little as possible.
Believe it or not, the insurance companies will search through your social media to surgically extract any and all information that makes it appear as though your injuries are mild (or even non-existent). Most importantly, everything that they find is 100% admissible at trial for the jury to see.
WHAT INFORMATION ARE THEY LOOKING FOR?
When the insurance companies visit your social media profiles, they will be looking to learn everything they can about your life, your habits, whether you have kids, where you like to go and spend time (so they can potentially hire a private investigator for surveillance), whether you’re doing any heavy lifting or exercise regularly, etc. They will also look for any information you give about how the accident happened so they can use that against you, potentially blaming you for causing it in-part. Of course, this may seem to be ‘over the top’, but make no mistake, the insurance companies will utilize everything they can to not pay you fairly or at all after an accident.
This may lead you to think you need to delete anything you have posted already about the accident. DO NOT delete anything on any of your profiles after an accident. That is potential destruction of evidence, and that can be used against you in court. Also, note any “tags” that are made for you on social media, since it can make information, pictures, or videos of you non-private, even if your profile is marked as private. You may also think if your profile is private only your friends and family will be able to see what you post. You can certainly choose to make your profile private at any time, but there is a caveat. If a lawsuit is filed on your behalf for personal injuries sustained in an accident, everything regarding the discovery of information changes. During litigation, all parties become legally entitled to information that they otherwise would not be entitled to. Your social media activity can fall within this category. It is safest to expect that your information will be shared with the other side at some point.
WHAT DO I DO WITH MY SOCIAL MEDIA AFTER AN ACCIDENT?
Therefore, it may be a good idea to simply take a hiatus from social media altogether following an accident and pursuing an injury claim. If you do choose to continue using social media, do not post about your injures, avoid “checking in” to locations (especially on vacations), and tell your friends and family to refrain from posting about your accident too. Social media has a myriad of benefits, but it will not help you recover on your claim.
GO TO HALE™
After any accident where you are injured due to the negligence of someone else, it is important to know your legal rights. At Hale Law, our team of experienced personal injury attorneys can give you a free consultation about your potential injury claim and what steps to take in order to be most successful. None of our services come at a cost to you unless we win.
Contact our offices day or night to discuss your case further at 941-735-452, or visit our website at halelaw.com.