Social media is a daily part of the lives of most Americans and using it may seem harmless and natural after an accident. You want to keep family and friends updated about your injuries and recovery, and the best way to accomplish your goal is to update your social media account. Posting updates on your social media accounts is a way to notify everyone at once how you are recovering after the accident. However, your friends and family may not be the only people reading your updates.
5 Important Reasons to Stay Off Social Media After a Chicago Car Accident
Our Chicago personal injury attorneys discuss five ways that using social media could hurt your injury claim after an accident.
1. Insurance companies watch social media.
The insurance company for the other party may be watching your social media posts in hopes that you post something it can use against you to deny or undervalue your claim. For example, let’s assume your back was injured in a car accident and you post a picture of yourself playing with your baby on the floor of a gym, the insurance company may question whether your back injury is as severe as you claim.
2. Courts can waive confidentiality.
Some information in an accident case is confidential between you and your attorney. However, sharing this information with others, as in posting something your attorney told you on your social media account, could waive confidentiality. Because you never know what could be important in an accident case, it is best not to post anything related to the accident, your injury, your recovery, or your case online.
3. An insurance company could receive court approval for access to your social media accounts.
Some courts throughout the country have ruled in favor of defendants seeking access to a person’s social media account. If a defense attorney is successful in a motion compelling access to your social media accounts, the court could order you to turn over your logins and passwords.
4. Nothing online is ever truly private.
Choosing the highest security levels can offer some protection for the information you post on social media accounts. However, did you remember to change the restrictions for friends sharing your posts, pictures, and comments? Are you always careful when you add friends and follows to ensure you “know” the person you are adding to your account? Did you know that someone could take a screenshot of your page and share the screenshot? Nothing you post online is ever truly private. There are numerous ways that your social media posts could be shared or discovered.
5. Deleting content does not always mean the content is gone forever.
When you delete content from your social media account, the content could remain on the platform’s server for some time. A defense attorney could obtain a subpoena from the court to access the server’s records. Also, content that you shared could have been shared by friends or family to third parties. Shared content may not always be deleted if you remove it from your profile.
Contact a Chicago Personal Injury Attorney for More Information
What is the bottom line? Using social media after an accident can hurt your chance of recovering full compensation for your damages. It is best to avoid using social media and posting anything online or sending information by email or text until your case is completed. Contact a Chicago personal injury attorney today for a free consultation to discuss your legal rights. If you must use social media or post information online, follow the instructions and heed the cautions given to you by your Chicago personal injury attorney.