A Salt Lake City Personal Injury Attorney’s Advice on Social Media
Has your Salt Lake City personal injury attorney told you to avoid social media until after your case is resolved? While you might not be happy to hear the advice, following it could be in your best interests.
If your case settles without a lawsuit, you have nothing to worry about. If not, the insurance company investigators and defense lawyers can gain access to your private social media accounts – and that can be detrimental to your personal injury claim. Here’s what you need to know.
Information on Social Media Is a Matter of Public Record
When you post anything on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or any other social site, you may think you’re sharing information with specific people. But even if your profile settings are marked as private, your account isn’t actually private.
According to the law, you have no expectation of privacy when posting photos and comments online. However, you can expect investigators and defense lawyers to comb through your accounts and, potentially, those of your friends and family.
Social Media Can Harm Your Personal Injury Claim
Your Salt Lake City personal injury attorney is on your side in a lawsuit, but the insurance company and their lawyers will look for evidence that your pain and suffering are not as severe as you claim.
They’ll seek out posts, photos and videos that show you smiling and happily engaged in social activities as well as any that reference your case. And though they might not have complete access to all of your social network accounts, anything they find may be used against you at trial.
Past Posts & Comments Can Affect Your Credibility
In many cases, no objective proof as to when and how the injury occurred exists. The lawsuit is based on your word – which means that your credibility can become the central focus at trial.
The defense lawyers and investigators will look through your past social media posts and comments, trying to find something that contradicts your claims and countermines your credibility. A statement or picture from years ago – such as one where you mentioned a pain issue or being depressed – could be used to suggest you have a pre-existing condition, not a valid injury claim.
Using Social Media After Filing a Personal Injury Claim
As you can see, staying away from social sites is to your advantage after filing a lawsuit. Credibility is crucial for a successful outcome, and you don’t want your comments and posts to be used against you.
However, if you decide to go on posting, look at every photo, video and statement with a critical eye. Think like a potential juror who doesn’t know you and consider whether the post could be misinterpreted before putting it out for the world to see.
Given that most everyone uses social media, avoiding it entirely can be challenging. Here at Symkoviak Law Firm, our highly experienced personal injury attorneys provide our clients with advice and guidance on how to enjoy social sites without compromising credibility.
If you’re in northern Utah and would like to hear what our Salt Lake City personal injury attorneys have to say about social media, contact our Salt Lake City office today.