How Can Social Media Affect Your Personal Injury Claim?
Winning your personal injury case can often present a battle against insurmountable odds. Large insurance companies, corporations with access to teams of attorneys, and the legal loopholes built into every contract and insurance policy seem to stack the field against the injury victim at every step. Winning requires the help of experienced Phoenix personal injury attorneys guiding you throughout the process and ensuring no detail is overlooked in your case. One detail you need to pay special attention to today is your social media posts.
Do Not Assume Your Posts are Private
In two recent decisions in Pennsylvania, courts ruled that posts and messages on social media could serve as evidence. Cases like these may well be used as precedent in Arizona courts in the very near future. The courts held in one case that the plaintiff in a personal injury suit must turn over her login information for her Instagram account allowing the automobile insurance company access to her photographs. The insurance company used the photographs to show the plaintiff’s injuries were not as serious as she claimed.
Good Days and Bad
If you’ve been injured you understand that you have some good days and some bad. We are more likely to post texts and pictures of our good days than the bad ones. Sometimes, you may push yourself through the pain further than you should to have one enjoyable day as a break from the misery you endure regularly because of your accident. The instant captured in your social media post does not capture the days of pain before and after, nor the price you paid for pushing too hard that day. It is also true that many people do attempt to fraudulently get money for injuries they don’t have or have exaggerated. Because of these things, posting on social media can be detrimental to your case.
Do Not Post About Your Case
We often like to paint a brighter picture of our lives online than we are living in reality. Posting something like, “I was in a car accident, but I’m okay.” May mean you are alive to you and your family, while the insurance company may use it as an admission that you avoided injury even though you meant nothing of the sort. Posting anything about your case only gives the other side more information on which to base a defense and ultimately pay out as little as possible in compensation for your injuries.
Don’t Delete Previous Posts
If you have already posted texts or photos online that you now worry may serve as evidence you, it is important that you not delete them. Attempting to cover up potential evidence is far worse than merely explaining the circumstances behind the post. The best advice is to make your accounts private and limit the number of people who can see your posts while you pursue your case. Be careful in accepting any new friend requests from people you do not know personally as this can be a way insurance companies gain access to your life.
Be Cautious Before Posting
Think carefully about any post on social media about how it could be misunderstood by someone not closely familiar with your situation. If in doubt, you can ask your attorney if the post is potentially detrimental, or simply refrain from posting it at all. Checking in to locations may give the impression you are perfectly capable of living a normal life with your injury, as can posting accounts of special activities you may enjoy even while injured.
Don’t forget about friend’s posts and photos as well. Change your privacy settings so that you won’t attach to tags in other user’s posts without your permission. In the end, you have nothing to fear from the truth, but taking precautions to ensure innocent photos and comments made online avoid manipulation against you is a reasonable precaution that can help protect your rights.
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The personal injury attorneys in Phoenix, Arizona at Knapp & Roberts have the compassion and trial lawyer skills to tell your story to a jury. We will get to know you and your family so that we can help the jury understand what has happened to you and your family and how it has changed your lives. Obtain the compensation necessary for the injuries and losses you have suffered.