There are over 330 million people in the United States. Just last year, over 70% of the U.S. population had a social media account. With a tap of the send button, your friends, family, and even strangers can receive instant updates of the largest or smallest events in your life.
Think twice before you tweet, snap, and post
When you’re in the middle of a personal injury case, just remember the Miranda Warning, “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say, can and will be used against you in a court of law.”
If you decide to ignore the warning and you’re still wondering if insurance companies can use social media against you, wonder no more. It’s true that your use of social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit can damage a personal injury lawsuit.
Example of social media use after a personal injury accident
Imagine walking in a grocery store when you suddenly slip on a puddle of water and fall on the ground.
After being evaluated by a medical professional, it’s been determined that you have a broken hip and you need to have surgery and other ongoing medical treatment.
You decide to take legal action against the store and its insurance company.
Weeks later, your friend invites you to a party. At the gathering, you snap some photos of the event and even record a video of yourself having fun and dancing with your friends. Like normal, you post your photos and videos on Facebook with the caption, “Look guys, my hip doesn’t hurt anymore.”
You had good intentions in sharing your news with friends and family, but the insurance company got a hold of your Facebook profile and will use your social media post to argue that you do not have injuries.
Why insurance companies search social media during an injury case
An insurance adjuster’s goal is to seek out any information that can be used to tell a story and see the big picture of your injuries, and possibly find evidence to place you in a negative light.
As a matter of fact, checking social media is something that every attorney and investigator does. Any legal professional will perform due diligence to have a better understanding of the client.
Information that social media provides for insurance companies
Depending on how much you use social media, your favorite platforms can tell your personal story. Social media profiles can provide an insurance claims professional with the following information:
- Where you live
- Your birthday
- Your posts and comments
- Your photos
- Your videos like Facebook Live
- Your marital status
- Your friends list
- Your place of employment
While a social media account contains all of this information, insurance companies prefer to access only your photos, videos, and messages.
An insurer will use this information to deny your personal injury claim and find ways to reduce their liability for your damages in a personal injury lawsuit.
Don’t let the insurance company pay you less than what you may deserve for your case. Consult a personal injury attorney in Texas for help with recovering the maximum amount of compensation for your injuries.
Is it illegal to use my social media against me in a personal injury case?
Not at all. Insurance companies are well within their rights to scour your social media profile.
Keep in mind, insurers aren’t looking for photos of your friends, families, or pets. They want potentially incriminating information so they can come up with a strategy to argue that the accident and your resulting injuries were your fault.
What types of social media posts can hurt my personal injury case?
If you are involved in a personal injury lawsuit, do not post the following on your social media accounts:
- Statements admitting fault
- Statements where you feel guilty and blame the accidents on yourself
- Rants showing your frustrations
- Photos or videos relating to the accident or your resulting injuries
Also, do not delete anything you have already posted to social media, as doing so has the potential to negatively affect the outcome of your injury case too.
So, what can I do about social media and my personal injury case?
It’s understandable that you may not be able to quit social media cold turkey. It may be an important method of communication between you and your family.
What you can do is reduce your time on social media and switch your settings to private. Even the online games that you play on your apps may be sharing your personal information with social media. Be sure to adjust the settings on your gaming apps and any other third-party apps that you use frequently, so as to further protect your privacy.
The best case scenario is to stop using social media until the end of your personal injury case. This means no posting, tweeting, sharing, or even commenting.
Don’t let social media damage your case, speak with our injury lawyers instead
Walking through the legal process can be confusing when you don’t have a knowledgeable and experienced Corpus Christi personal injury attorney by your side. Don’t take your anger and frustrations about your personal injury to social media.
Instead, let the injury attorneys at The Burkett Law Firm take action for you and pursue maximum compensation for your damages, as quickly as possible.