Can Social Media Use Impact the Outcome of Your Personal Injury Claim?
Americans spend a lot of time interacting on social media. Whether it is using Facebook to connect with friends and family across the globe, using Twitter to share book reviews or the latest trend, or simply posting your favorite moments on Instagram, the time spent there rarely has a negative impact on your day-to-day life. What happens, though, when you file a personal injury claim? Can your social media use influence the outcome of your case? You bet it can! The following explains how, and it provides you with some tips for reducing the risk.Understanding the Nature of Personal Injury Cases
Most often, personal injury cases occur between an injured party and a negligent party. Few negligent parties pay the victim out of pocket; instead, the case is often handled by an insurance company (auto insurance, homeowner’s insurance, premises liability insurance, etc.). Because they are in the business of making money, not paying it out, insurance companies often do all they can to avoid a payout. In some cases, they may even go so far as to dig into your personal life; that includes surfing the internet to see what you might be up to while your claim is pending.
If you happen to have a social media account and are discussing the case, appear to be less injured than you claim, or otherwise say or do something that could compromise your case, the payout could be reduced. In some instances, it could even result in a complete denial. Thankfully, there are ways to mitigate against the risk.Protecting Your Right to Pursue Compensation
Social media is not the entirety of a person’s life; it is merely a snapshot of a moment in time. Like most personal injury victims, you are likely to have moments of depression, anger, grief, and even good moments – progress while at your physical therapist’s office, positive news from your doctor, or even just a day that you feel better than usual. These moments should never be shared while a personal injury case is pending. Other things to avoid sharing include:
- Vacations or trips (including those related to work or business),
- Photographs of physical activity,
- Updates on your case or condition,
- News or information about your case,
- Any indication of what you plan to do with the settlement,
- Large purchases or transactions, and
- Any other information that could be perceived as a threat to your case.
The best possible way to protect your case is to avoid interacting social media altogether. If this is not feasible, then it is advised that you limit your interactions as much as possible. Increase your privacy settings so that only friends can see your posts. Above all else, never post any news about your case – be it good or bad – without first consulting with your attorney.Contact Our San Jose Personal Injury Lawyers
If you or someone you love has experienced an injury caused by the negligence of another, contact Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, LLP for assistance. Dedicated to your best interest, our San Jose personal injury lawyers will protect your rights and pursue the most favorable outcome possible. Schedule a free consultation by calling (408) 289-1417.