The majority of people who use social media do so every day. And no longer is social media just used to stay in touch with friends and family; instead, it is used to share photos, life events, and often personal information with a huge network of people, ranging from blood relatives to complete strangers. The Pew Research Center reports that 65 percent of American adults use at least one social media site, while many use multiple.
Using social media to share facts about your life, pictures, and the like may seem relatively harmless. But if you have recently been injured and are thinking about filing a personal injury claim, you should think seriously about deleting your social media accounts for the time being. Here’s why:
Your Social Media Accounts Are a Hotbed of Information (Against You)
When you file a personal injury claim, it is the job of the defense to gather as much information on you as possible. This includes your social media activity, and the defense has a right to know what you do on social media. And unlike the pre-Internet days when counsel had to really dig deep to find out what a plaintiff was up to, in today’s world, it is as easy as going online.
Your social media accounts contain all of the information that the other side needs to build up a strong case against you. If you have been active on your account post your injury, you may have posted about how your injury occurred, shared pictures, and kept all your followers up to date about your recovery. Simultaneously, you may have also shared information about how you’re grateful to be alive, happy and well despite being injured, and about your recent camping trip (or similar active experience).
This Information Can Be Used to Devalue Your Claim
Whether you’ve filed a claim or are in the midst of a lawsuit, the insurance adjuster/defense will use this information to devalue your claim. Statements that you’re happy or photos that imply the same can be used to negate your claim to damages for pain and suffering. Similarly, photos or updates about your recent trip can be used to devalue your claim of permanent injury or disability.
Minimize Activity on Social Media
There is nothing good that comes from using social media after you have been injured. The best thing that you can do is to delete your account entirely, or to at least severely minimize your activity. (However, keep in mind that there may be something in your past that can be used against you. For example, you may claim that prior to your injury, you loved to hike and have lost the ability to do so, yet photos/updates do not support your participation in any hiking activity.)
Turn to a Lawyer for Legal Help
One of the best things that you can do is to consult with an attorney who can advise you regarding dos and don’ts during a personal injury claim. At Fisk & Monteleone, LTD., our experienced Rockford personal injury attorneys are ready to meet with you. Call 815-209-9030 for your free consultation now.