Social Media: Do Not Add Fuel to the Fire
Modern users of technology are very open about their day to day lives. Social media users share their thoughts and experiences with their “Friends” on Facebook and “Followers” on Twitter, among other social media platforms. Have you ever stopped to think what effect social media might have on a personal injury claim?
If you have been injured and make a claim for injuries, the adverse party will do their best to find out as much as possible about you. This includes things about your day to day life. For example, if you claim that you can no longer lift objects heavier than 15 pounds, the adverse party will want to know whether you are, in fact, able to lift objects heavier than 15 pounds by catching you in the act.
The point of the investigation is to find out how your claimed injuries are affecting your activities of daily life and confirm that your claims are truthful. Traditional investigation included surveillance of the claimant by utilizing private investigators, photography, and videography. Now, social media makes the adverse party’s job very easy to investigate a claimant.
Some claimants do all the work themselves by posting on social media. If you are making a claim for personal injuries and have active social media accounts, you need to be mindful of what you post. Here are some things to consider:
- Privacy settings – do you have privacy settings enabled so that you have control over which users see the content that you post? It is very easy to search a name and see all the content that user is posting if privacy settings are not enabled.
- Search function – have you allowed other users to search for your social media account by typing in your name or username? It is sometimes possible to disable this feature.
- Connections – do you allow connections with users you do not personally know? Someone may try to connect with you for investigative purposes. Be wary about connecting with users you do not know.
- Posting Content – have you posted any content about your accident or injuries? Is that content truthful? Are you posting any content that is inconsistent with your claim for personal injuries?