Social media can create complications for people involved in personal injury claims. On one hand, it can be a wonderful source of support and connection with friends and family during difficult times. On the other hand, insurance companies and defense attorneys may try to use your posts and comments against you
One of the dangers of social media is the potential for posted information to cast doubt on your claim even though you have done nothing wrong. Imagine you've suffered a severe back injury at work. During your medical treatment or time away from work, you’re invited to a wedding. You feel well enough to go but you are unable to dance. What you think would be an innocent photo of you standing on the edge of a dance floor could easily be misconstrued as you participating in dancing, even though that’s not what happened. This kind of evidence can be detrimental to your case, as it may cast doubt on the severity of your injuries. Always remember, comments and photographs that seem innocent can be misinterpreted and used against you.
Your social media activity can also lead to inconsistencies. Anything you say, even in jest, could be used to discredit your claims. You may think you are making light of, or joking about your injury because you don’t want your family to worry about you. However, those statements could be offered as evidence that you really aren’t as injured as you may be.
While you might believe that setting your profiles to private protects your content from prying eyes, this is not always the case. Judges can order the disclosure of private content if it's deemed relevant to your case.
It's not only your own posts that matter. What others post about you can have a significant impact as well. A friend's photo of you attending an event can be used to undermine your claim. A casual mention of your activities or whereabouts could become a crucial piece of evidence against you.
Here are some ideas that may help you to take extra care while making a personal injury claim.
Take a Break Consider temporarily refraining from all social media during the pendency of your claim. This can be challenging, especially if you're accustomed to sharing updates on a daily basis. However, it's a crucial step to protect your interests.
Seek Help If you must post online, consider enlisting the assistance of a friend or family member to monitor your social media accounts. Their objective should be to ensure no damaging content is shared during this period.
Maintain a Consistent Message Make sure all information about your medical condition you present in court aligns with what is shared on your social media profiles. Remember, any discrepancies will be exploited by the opposing party.
What you believe you are innocently sharing online can significantly impact the outcome of your case, and it's essential to exercise caution and restraint during this time. By taking proactive measures, such as temporarily disconnecting from social media or carefully managing your online presence, you can help protect your interests and increase your chances of a successful personal injury claim. Remember, in the realm of social media, the line between sharing and oversharing can be thin, and the consequences can be far-reaching.