Don’t Post It – Advice from a Personal Injury Lawyer

personal injury lawyer Ottawa - impacts of social media

A personal injury lawyer wants to make sure you’re aware that your social media posts can be used against you in court. So before you upload something, scroll down and have a look at how it could potentially impact a personal injury case.

Connecting through social media is more common now than it has ever been. With 3.8 billion people using social media multiple times per day, it’s highly likely that you’ll be able to find someone online. For the most part it’s all about keeping in touch with people you wouldn’t see otherwise. However, there are a few downsides to letting people know what you’re up to.

It’s Evidence

You’re voluntarily sharing information about yourself with the public. When you share something that could be self-incriminating through a social media platform, it can be legally used in a court without any issue. Private messages, comments, videos and photographs are only some of the things that can be used. This new type of evidence has been used previously in court and it will certainly be used again.

How the Evidence Can Work Against You

During personal injury cases only the post-accident posts are of interest to the defense and insurance company. So what can they find out from your posts?

One of the main things they’ll be looking for is anything that would lead to reasonable doubt about how your injury is negatively impacting your life. If you claim to be in severe pain and cannot work because of this and then post a picture of you and your family on a hiking trip, then this contradicts your original claim entirely.  The same goes for when you check in at certain locations or events; any post you make that shows you’re out doing the things that you’d normally do, builds a case against you.

If you think you’re safe because your accounts are set to private, think again. While an insurance company won’t be able to see your profile, someone who’s friends with you on social media could voluntarily share your information with them. It is also reasonable to expect the insurance company to hire a private investigator to follow you and ensure that the claims you’re making are true.

While they’re looking for evidence to disprove your claims, you should be compiling evidence to support your claim.

Ask your personal injury lawyer about how your social media posts could impact your case. They’ve more than likely seen it happen before and can help prepare you. One of the easiest things to do is simply avoid using any social media until after your case has been settled. It might seem a bit extreme, but it saves you from having to worry about the possibility of destroying your own case.

If you Must – A Tip to Follow

If you still wish to use social media during your case, then most definitely avoid discussing or sharing anything about your case online. Before making a post, you should be thinking about how it could possibly be used against you. If there’s even the slightest chance it could, don’t post it.