For most of us, social media plays a big part in our everyday lives. Especially during December, it can be a great way to share pictures and memories from holiday festivities with friends and family. That being said, as a personal injury Memphis lawyer, I know social media can also be used against you.
If you are pursuing legal action after an accident, you need to be very cautious about what you put online. With personal injury claims specifically, what you post on social media can have drastic consequences. Insurance companies and defense attorneys will do whatever it takes to undercut your claim. This includes using social media posts to prove that your injury and distress is invalid.
Tips for safe social media use while filing a personal injury claim
1. Keep personal information offline
You can help protect your identity by omitting personal information about yourself. This means refraining from posting your contact details like your email address or phone number. Also, use a nickname instead of your full name.
2. Review your privacy settings
If you’re in the middle of a personal injury claim, adjust your privacy settings. By default, Facebook and Instagram allow almost anyone to view your page. Restrict access to your social media accounts so only your listed friends can see what you are posting.
3. Be careful what you post
Even with your accounts set to private, don’t post anything that could negatively affect your case. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. For example, depending on your specific injury, a photo of you dancing or hiking could be interpreted by the Social Security Administration (SSA) as evidence of your ability to work. Even posts that are jokes or sarcastic in tone can be misread and difficult to explain.
4. Don’t discuss your claim online
Social media is the main form of communication for a lot of people. Which means a well-meaning friend or family member might ask you over Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram about your accident. Do your best to keep these conversations offline. Refrain from sharing any information about medical treatment and how you are physically feeling. Also, don’t share any information about your case. This includes conversations with your attorney or any exchanges you’ve had with anyone involved.
5. Review older posts and accounts
Many of us have old social media accounts we don’t use anymore that are still viewable online. Go through any dormant accounts, as well as any old posts, and delete anything that could affect your claim. For example, delete photos of you engaging in physical activity.
6. Be cautious of people you don’t know
Be wary of new friend requests on social media. It is possible that an unknown person who is trying to interact with you is actually connected to an insurance company or defense attorney.
7. Ask your friends and family not to tag you.
Limit your posts and ask friends to refrain from tagging you in photos, statuses, or check-ins. When you are tagged you are not just easier to find on social media, you can be found more easily in a Google search. Which means someone could find images of you just by typing your name into the search engine.
Speak to a personal injury Memphis lawyer today for FREE
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident, give us a call at (901) 327-2100 or contact us online for a FREE consultation to discuss your options.
For more than 30 years, our lawyers have helped injured parties recover funds to pay for medical bills, cover lost wages, and recover after the trauma of an accident. We understand the emotional toll an injury can take, and are known for our compassion as well as our results.
Give us a call today to hear how we can help.