In today’s digital world, social media has become an integral part of our lives. It allows us to share our experiences and connect with others like never before. However, if you are going through a personal injury case in Georgia, it’s important to stay away from social media. Your seemingly harmless posts can be used against you in court and jeopardize your chances of receiving fair compensation for your injuries.
In this article, an experienced Douglasville personal injury lawyer will explain how insurance adjusters can use your social media activity against you. But first of all, let us clarify this issue: can an adjuster legally use your social media posts?
Social Media Content Can Be Legally Used in a Personal Injury Case
If you are going through a personal injury case in Georgia, it’s important to understand that your social media content can be legally used against you in court. Insurance adjusters and defense attorneys often scour social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for evidence that contradicts or undermines your claims.
Social media is considered a public forum. Thus, there is no privacy or confidentiality protection in place. You don’t have to take our word for it. Specialists who retrieve online data for use in court say plainly that it is so.
It’s not just what you post that can affect your case. Comments made by friends on your posts could also come back to haunt you. In short, anything posted on social media is fair game when it comes to personal injury cases. It’s always best to err on the side of caution and stay off social media until after your case has been resolved.
Your Social Media Activity Can Contradict Your Statements
One of the biggest reasons that you should stay away from social media during a personal injury case is because your activity on these platforms can contradict your statements. This means that anything you post, like, or share can potentially be used against you in court.
It’s important to remember that social media posts don’t provide a complete picture of what’s happening in someone’s life. However, insurance companies will use them selectively to create doubts about the validity of a claim. Therefore, it’s best to avoid posting anything related to ongoing legal proceedings until the case has been resolved.
Here are just a few ways in which social media can hurt your personal injury case.
Check-ins Show You Are Not Confined at Home
Posting on social media during a personal injury case can have serious consequences. One of the biggest mistakes people make is checking in at locations they shouldn’t be visiting while claiming to be confined at home due to their injuries.
Insurance adjusters and defense attorneys can use check-ins against you in court. They may argue that if you were able to go out, then your injuries are not as severe as you claim them to be. Additionally, this could contradict any statements you made about your inability to leave the house or perform daily tasks.
Photos and Videos Disprove the Extent of Your Injuries
When you’re in the midst of a personal injury case, it’s understandable that you may want to share updates with your friends and family on social media. However, sharing photos or videos of yourself could be detrimental to your case if they show you engaging in activities that contradict the extent of your injuries.
For example, if you claim to have a severe back injury but then post pictures of yourself participating in physically demanding activities such as rock climbing or playing sports, this could be used against you in court. Adjusters may argue that your injuries are not as serious as claimed because they do not prevent you from engaging in these activities.
Similarly, even innocent-seeming photos can be used against you. For instance, posting a photo where it appears that there is no visible physical damage can give adjusters the impression that the injury wasn’t really severe at all.
It’s important to remember that what we share on social media can easily become evidence for both sides during a legal dispute. It’s best to avoid sharing anything regarding your medical condition or daily activity until after the resolution process has ended.
Friends’ Comments May Undermine Your Case
Your online friends can be a valuable source of support and encouragement during a difficult time like a personal injury case. However, what they say on social media can have an impact on your case.
If your friends make comments that contradict the severity or cause of your injuries, it could harm your credibility in court. For example, if a friend comments on a photo of you saying “I thought you said you couldn’t walk?” it could undermine the credibility of your injury claims.
Even innocent comments from well-meaning friends can be used against you in court. If someone posts “glad to see you’re feeling better!” on one of your selfies taken after the accident, this could suggest that you were not as injured as you claimed to be.
Adjusters Can Find Ways to See Your Private Posts
Insurers say that they impose ethical rules on their adjusters – for example, preventing them from sending friend requests to claimants in order to see their private social media posts. However, you will be surprised how many insurance adjusters resort to this tactic.
Thus, during a personal injury case, you should never accept new friend requests. However, the best approach remains taking a break from social media and focusing on your recovery and face-to-face interactions with your family and friends.
Do Not Delete Social Media Posts During a Personal Injury Case
Let us imagine you made a mistake and posted something that can be misconstrued by an insurance adjuster. Your first instinct is to delete it. Do not do that! An adjuster may have already seen it and made a screenshot.
When they notice the post gone, they will latch on to that to claim that you are trying to destroy evidence proving that you are not as injured as you seem. Instead, contact your Douglasville personal injury lawyer who will help you formulate a comment clarifying the issue.
Rely on the Guidance of Your Douglasville Personal Injury Lawyer
The legal team at Hartley, Rowe & Fowler, P.C. knows how tedious it is to stay at home while recovering from accident injuries. Social media is a tempting way of passing the time and maintaining a positive mindset.
However, it can also be the factor that undermines your case and prevents you from getting the fair compensation you deserve.
The best course of action is to listen to your Douglasville personal injury lawyer and find other ways to stay entertained.
Reach out to us if you suffered any accident caused by someone else’s negligence. We offer a free case review and you can call us at 678-825-6004 anytime 24/7 to schedule an appointment!