Every day, millions of us share details about our lives on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. However, if you’ve been injured because someone else was negligent – a distracted driver, a careless property owner, or even an employer – and you’re taking or considering legal action with the help of a San Antonio personal injury lawyer, you need to use caution when you post comments, pictures, or videos to social media.
Keep reading to learn what some insurance companies will do to contest your injury claim and compile evidence to dispute it. Almost anything you post to a social media platform like Facebook or Instagram can be misrepresented and used against you.
How Do Insurance Companies Investigate Personal Injury Claims?
If you’ve been injured because someone else was negligent, and you submit an injury claim to the negligent party’s insurance company, that company may seek evidence to prove that you either exaggerated or invented your injury. Insurance companies comb through the injury victim’s online posts to find comments, photos, and anything else that may be incriminating.
For instance, if you’re claiming that you cannot work because you are seriously injured, but the insurance company finds online video of you mowing the lawn and trimming the hedges, your personal injury claim will probably be denied.
After you file a personal injury claim, someone you’ve never met may send you a friend request on Facebook. Insurance investigators posing as friends have used this tactic in the past. You should not accept any friend requests from strangers until your personal injury claim has been resolved.
Don’t Social Media Platforms Have Privacy Settings?
Privacy settings won’t help. An insurance company’s lawyers have several legal tools for gaining access to whatever you’ve posted online, so if you’re seeking compensation with a personal injury claim, it’s smart to assume that everything you post is seen by everyone and available at any time.
It’s also smart to assume that nothing is ever really “deleted,” and you should probably avoid posting photographs or videos – any photographs or videos – until your personal injury case is resolved and your compensation is in your hands.
What About Social Media and Your Friends?
An insurance company may also scrutinize your friends’ social media accounts, so it may be wise to avoid video cameras and social media entirely while your personal injury case is pending.
If you make a mistake innocently online while your case is pending, your injury attorney can probably prevent it from damaging your case, but consider this example. Let’s say you tell your friends on Facebook that you “feel great.” Many of us post positive comments to Facebook even when we don’t feel great, to encourage friends and to keep them from worrying about us.
How Can You Obtain Sound Legal Advice?
But a jury might interpret “I feel great” to mean that you weren’t seriously injured, and that is why many personal injury attorneys in San Antonio advise clients against using social media – that is, avoiding it entirely – until their cases are resolved. That’s almost certainly the best thing to do.
To learn more about your rights as an injured victim of negligence, arrange to meet with San Antonio personal injury lawyer Matthew S. Norris by calling our office at 210-549-7633. Your first legal consultation costs nothing, and there’s no obligation. If you’ve been injured by negligence, let us help.