Understanding how social media can impact your personal injury claim will help you to avoid mistakes that could jeopardize your rights and ability to recover compensation. For example, posting or getting tagged in the wrong thing on social media could give the insurer a reason to offer you a lower settlement or change how jurors see you. Therefore, it is vital to follow certain rules during this time.
While you are going through the insurance claims process or when litigation is pending or ongoing, you need to be mindful of your online activities and image. In addition, you should consider working with a personal injury lawyer who can take steps to protect your rights.
How Social Media Can Affect the Outcome of Your Case
If you have social media accounts, the insurance company, the liable party, and others involved in your personal injury claim may attempt to use the information they find to undermine your damage claim. Searching for social media accounts and closely monitoring them is common practice for insurance adjusters today.
The things they will look for include:
- Any mentions of the accident
- Admission of fault
- Discussion of your injuries, including telling people you are “fine”
- Proof that you are engaging in activities despite being hurt
- Documentation that your injuries existed before your accident
Any of this could be used to argue that your injuries are not as serious as you claim, potentially reducing the value of your case. The insurance adjuster’s goal is to protect their employer’s bottom line, and evidence like this may suggest you do not deserve the compensation you demand based on your documented expenses and losses.
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What to Do to Safeguard Your Accounts
Personal injury attorneys used to recommend deleting or deactivating all online social accounts while clients were navigating the claims process or litigating a case. However, this is not always possible because many people rely on their social media for work, business promotions, and other crucial needs.
Instead, the first thing you should do—even before you file your claim—is to lock down your privacy settings on all social media accounts. You need to make your pages are available to “friends only” and delete any old posts that could be used against you.
Watch What You and Your Friends Post
Even with tight privacy settings, you should be aware of how your posts and words may look to those who want to build a case against you. You should also be aware of any pictures posted of you by others. Do not let friends tag you dancing, skiing, or going for a hike.
If your case is going to trial, the insurance company will collect posts and online media to present to the jurors. Even things such as political memes could affect how the jury sees you, so be mindful of your online image.
Ask Your Attorney for Additional Help Protecting Your Right to Fair Compensation
If you work with a personal injury lawyer, you can discuss your options for fair compensation with your legal team. They will likely handle all communication with the insurer, liable party, and others to ensure your words will not be used against you. They can also offer additional advice about handling online posts and what steps you should take.
Your attorney will fight for your best interests, pursuing a positive outcome in your case based on the expenses and losses you incurred because of the at-fault party’s negligence. They will investigate your case, develop a strong argument for compensation, and file a claim on your behalf.
If they cannot negotiate a fair settlement, or there is another reason to sue, your lawyer will also handle this process for you. You can focus on healing and getting your life back to normal while they manage your legal case.
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The Morris Bart law firm may be able to guide you through the claims process by managing your case and seeking compensation on your behalf.
We serve the Gulf South from 15 locations. You can find our team in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Arkansas. Call to talk with an attorney about your personal injury case for free today.
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