Using social media may not seem like a bad idea. After all, you are eager to share what happened to you with your friends, family members, and followers, and let everyone know that you are fine. However, what many people do not realize is that posting on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or even TikTok, can hurt their personal injury case.
Why You Shouldn’t Use Social Media During a Personal Injury Case
When posting anything on social media, keep in mind that anything you post is readily available to your insurance company, the other party involved in your accident, insurer, and the lawyers who represent them.
After filing a personal injury claim in Florida, your insurance company will begin collecting evidence to discredit your injuries and either undervalue or deny your claim. “But what does it have to do with my social media posts?” you may wonder.
Posting on social media while your personal injury case is pending can hurt your chances of receiving a fair settlement for various reasons.
Pictures and Videos
The photos and videos you post online will be available to other people and can be used as admissible evidence in court to discredit your personal injury case. If the insurer finds proof that the photos or videos contradict your claim, they may have grounds to deny your claim altogether.
For example, if you claim that you cannot walk because of your injury and several days after the accident you post a photo of you and your friends swimming, the insurance company is likely to challenge the validity of your claim.
Posts About Your Accident or Injury
It is best to avoid posting anything about your accident or injury after filing an insurance claim. Your words can be used against you. Anything you post on social media about your accident or injury can be taken out of context to discredit your injury.
Posts and Comments by Friends
Even if you do not post anything about your accident or injury yourself, you should also watch out for what your friends post and comment on social media. If your friends know what happened, warn them against posting anything about the accident. Also, avoid answering direct questions about your accident or injury when asked by followers in private messaging, especially if this person is someone you do not know personally.
Closing or Suspending Your Social Media Account
Closing or suspending your social media account after filing an insurance claim could raise suspicion. Even if you closed or suspended your account, it could still be accessed and viewed if the other party files a subpoena. Even your older posts can hurt your personal injury case in Florida, which is why closing or suspending your account may attract even more unwanted attention.
Changing Privacy Settings
Changing privacy settings is not an effective way to prevent the insurance company and other parties from accessing your posts. If the other party subpoenas your social media account, the court could provide access to your public posts and even private messages.
How to Protect Yourself on Social Media During a Personal Injury Case?
It is vital to exercise extreme caution when using social media during a personal injury case in Florida. Follow these tips to protect yourself on social media while your insurance claim is pending:
- Do not post anything about the accident or your injuries.
- Keep in mind that once you post something online, even a comment, it will remain there permanently, even if you “delete” it.
- While you can change your privacy settings from “public” to “private,” keep in mind that when it comes to posting on social media, nothing is private, even private messages.
- Change settings to prevent others from tagging you in posts, photos, videos, and comments.
- Block apps that automatically share your information, including location.
- It is best to refrain from using social medial until after your personal injury case has been resolved.
If you need assistance with seeking compensation for your injury, consult with a personal injury attorney in Florida. An experienced attorney will protect your legal rights and help you maximize the value of your claim.