A Personal Injury Claim Can Be Damaged by Social Media
- November 6, 2015
- Personal Injury
We live in a vastly different world than even a decade ago, when social media was not a “thing”. Back then, privacy was viewed as an absolute right people would defend with strong convictions. These days we have become lax about sharing our lives in part due to social media. This tendency for openness and a more public private life can have serious consequences if you have to file a personal injury claim.
The first advice is to speak to a personal injury attorney to guide you through this complicated process. This should be done even before you remove any posts from your social media sites which you feel are incriminating because the removal itself can be used as evidence against you in a court of law.
Even though you have checked all your privacy settings to keep your social media accounts accessible to only family and a few close friends, you can expect insurance lawyers and others to dig through your accounts and find even the tiniest morsel of incriminating evidence. Lawyers can even request a judge to allow access to your social media sites. It is common that such requests are granted.
What you write on your social media pages can be manipulated against you in front of a judge during your personal injury trial. For instance, a seemingly innocuous statement from you about your expectation of winning the case and a large financial compensation can be presented in court to throw doubt about your claim to being injured and infer your motivation for the case was rather the reward of cash.
Posting pictures online is a big part of the social media attraction, but like written posts, your pictures can be misconstrued against you during your personal injury lawsuit. A Canadian example illustrates this point really well. In 2009, a woman suffering from severe depression was told to take time off work and have fun by her doctor. She took a vacation to help her mood and posted bikini-clad beach pictures on her Facebook account. After viewing the pictures, her insurance company revoked her long-term disability benefits which she then had to fight to get back.
This case also clearly highlights the real dangers of insurance companies accessing completely private Facebook and other social media sites, as the women did not “understand how Manulife accessed her photos because her Facebook profile is locked and only people she approves can look at what she posts.”
Our Dallas personal injury law firm with experienced attorneys that can help you navigate your way through the cumbersome legal procedures and social media issues which may arise in a personal injury case. If you feel you should be compensated for an injury but are worried about your social media posts, you can contact us at 972-774-9800 to speak to a lawyer regarding your situation.