When Social Media Adds Insult to Personal Injury

Social media is a great way to stay connected to family and friends, strengthening bonds between users all around the world. With 247 million Americans1 reportedly using social media, it has undoubtedly become a routine part of everyday life. But one simple post can be extremely damaging, with just a few keystrokes and clicks making a lasting impact. 

Social media is a great way to stay connected to family and friends, strengthening bonds between users all around the world. With 247 million Americans1 reportedly using social media, it has undoubtedly become a routine part of everyday life. But one simple post can be extremely damaging, with just a few keystrokes and clicks making a lasting impact. 

Through “discovery,” the process of amassing evidence, insurance companies or investigators may scour social media for anything to help make their case – and discredit yours. You may assume that this would be dismissed as “hearsay,” but if you (or anyone testifying) make a statement on social media that contradicts your testimony, there’s a legal exception that may make the information admissible in court. 

That’s why it’s best to avoid posting altogether. But if you do, we’ve outlined some potential pitfalls for Berkeley County residents to avoid:

  • Don’t leave your profile “public.” Be sure to set your profile’s privacy setting to “private” so that only your “friends” and people who follow you can view your posts. Keep in mind, though, that there are ways around these settings. For instance, if someone is friends with one of your friends, your profile may still be viewable.
  • Don’t post pictures. No matter how harmless a picture may appear, it could be used to show that your injury claim is exaggerated. Even if you’re not mountain climbing or running a marathon, your photo could make your injuries seem less severe and actually contradict your testimony. Better safe than sorry!
  • Don’t “check in.” Again, notifying followers that you’re attending an event or visiting a location could be used to show that you’re not as injured as you claim.
  • Don’t delete or remove past posts. No matter your intentions, this could be cast in a negative light – and even make it seem that you’re attempting to hide evidence.

Again, it’s best to avoid social media until your personal injury case is resolved. While this may seem virtually impossible to frequent users, remember that a single post could significantly impact the outcome of your case. It’s simply not worth the risk.

To learn more or to schedule your free initial consultation in our Moncks Corner, SC office, contact West Law Firm at 843-761-5626 or click here.

Sources 1. https://www.statista.com/statistics/278409/number-of-social-network-users-in-the-united-states/

About West Law Firm, P.A.

Founded by H. Norman West in 1945, West Law Firm has served the Lowcountry for nearly 75 years.  Practice areas include personal injury, car wrecks, criminal defense, DUI defense, family law, wrongful death, land disputes, business litigation, probate and estate planning, and alternative dispute resolution.

West Law Firm, P.A.
207 Carolina Avenue
Moncks Corner SC 29461

 

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