When you file a personal injury claim against a person or business, their attorneys will do what they can to dismantle your case. This includes looking at your social media profiles and activity for evidence that casts doubt on you. Unfortunately, some people jeopardize their cases with their online behavior even if they don't think posts and photos have any bearing on their injuries. While it's best to temporarily deactivate your social media accounts until the claim is settled or argued in court, being aware of the dangers can help protect you.
Why Social Media Is Risky in Personal Injury Cases
1. You Might Contradict Your Own Claims
Anything you post on social media can be used in court—possibly to dispute your case. For example, if you claim you have back pain from your injuries but post pictures of yourself lifting heavy objects, the other side may question the truthfulness of your claim.
To protect yourself, set your social media accounts to private and beware of any new friend requests. It's not uncommon for the other party's attorney to pose as someone wanting to connect with the plaintiff.
2. You Might Show What You're Capable of Physically
Comments, photos, events, and destinations can be seen by others on social media. Depending on the situation, such activity can provide the other side with information to dispute your claim. This is especially true if your activity suggests that you're more physically able than you say.
For example, if you say your back is still giving your problems and then check into a dance club, the other side may have questions. Even if you sat in a booth instead of dancing, your presence could cast doubt on you. For this reason, it's best to avoid commenting, posting, or checking into places with any of your social media profiles to stay safe.
3. You Might Jeopardize Witness Testimonies
The other side may rely on testimonies from friends, family, co-workers, and witnesses to the accident to assess the severity of your injuries. This includes comments from other people on social media that can potentially be used against you.
For instance, if you claim you have a hurt ankle and can't walk, but your running buddy leaves a post on your Facebook wall saying, "Great run today," this will raise questions about the veracity of your claim. Turn off comments on your posts and accounts to minimize the risk.
If you're considering a personal injury case, it's important to have a competent attorney by your side whether or not you're deactivating your social media accounts. For help in Enterprise, Dothan, or Ozark, AL, trust Carey & Hamner, P.C. These attorneys provide aggressive representation, working hard to get their clients the compensation they deserve. View their practice areas online and call (855) 435-4797 to schedule a consultation.