Injury Victims: Beware of Social Media Use During Lawsuit
Posted in Personal Injury on February 6, 2014
The use of social media content as evidence in legal cases has increased over the years. With millions of Americans making status updates, uploading media and checking in at locations via smartphones, tablets and computers, it’s easy to track a social media user’s life just by visiting his or her profile.
When our clients have personal injury cases in progress, we caution them to watch what they post to their Facebook, Twitter and other social networking accounts. Insurance companies have been known to investigate claimants’ profiles to see if they are engaging in activity that should be impossible due to their injuries.
How Insurance Adjusters Use Social Media Content
There is a risk that the insurance adjuster will investigate your profile and find information to misconstrue your case. For example, if you posted images of a rock-climbing trip from last year and you recently suffered a broken hip from a car accident, if those images are commented upon, they may reappear in your news feed. An insurance adjuster who sees images of an injured claimant being active could assume from those photos that the claimant is not as injured as he or she claims.
Normally, your social media content is protected if your privacy settings are set to private so only your friends can see your content. However, recent cases in Florida have allowed the opposing counsel to request the passwords of plaintiffs’ social media accounts so they may investigate and secure the content posted to the profiles.
Insurance Adjusters May Look at Your Friends’ Content
It’s not always a claimant’s personal posts that may cause trouble for their claim; in many cases, the insurance companies will look beyond the claimant’s profile and to the profiles of his or her friends to see if there is any potential misconduct that could compromise the settlement.
To avoid any repercussions from social media content, it is best to refrain from posting anything about the accident or discussing it via electronic communication. You never know who is watching and listening and how much access that person can be granted to your accounts!
The Chalik & Chalik Team Works to Protect You
One of the biggest mistakes injury victims can make is to talk about their injuries too much to others. Whether it’s on the phone with the insurance adjuster or tweeting to your followers, the more you say, the more you can damage your claim.
Protect yourself from damaging your personal injury claim by contacting Jason or Debi Chalik before you speak to anyone else. Call 855-529-0269, or reach out to us via our contact form to connect with us and schedule a FREE consultation.