Imagine. You have just been seriously injured and you’ve come home from the hospital, what is one of the first things you’re going to want to do? If you are like me, one of your first instincts will be to go on social media and let all your friends and family know that you are alright. I mean it would be the quickest and most efficient form of communication, why not take advantage of it? All you want to say is something similar to, “Hey everyone, I was in a car accident recently. It was a bit scary, but I just wanted to let everyone know that I’m – OK!”
Well if you’re planning on putting together a personal injury case to help compensate you for the damages to yourself and your vehicle, you may want to think twice before making that Facebook update, tweet, or Instagram post.
For example, if you plan on arguing that your life has been negatively impacted by the negligence of the other driver, that simple “I’m OK” post could hurt your case. To avoid having your case diminished by social media, here are some social media tips that will help you avoid a situation like that:
AVOID TALKING ABOUT YOUR INJURY
Just don’t post anything! Even if you don’t think you’ll pursue litigation, you never know if your circumstances will change as time progresses. Maybe you feel fine now, or even just a bit sore. But down the road, you find out that the car accident really did a number on your back, hips, and/or neck. You may even find out you need a surgery because of the accident. Pursuing litigation for those damages could help alleviate the financial burden of your medical bills, but those social media posts could prevent you from getting compensated fully.
AVOID TALKING ABOUT MEDICAL ISSUES
You are likely not a doctor. Let the medical professionals determine what your condition is. Tweeting out or posting what you think is wrong with you may be contrary to the medical facts. Let a jury hear from the experts and leave the diagnoses to the professionals.
AVOID TALKING BAD ABOUT THE PERSON OR COMPANY THAT HURT YOU
Yes, you were hurt, and it’s only natural you want to express your frustration to others. But try doing so in one-on-one conversations. Making an angry post about the person or company that hurt you could be seen as evidence that you are just trying to be vengeful towards them and may be asking for more than you need.
Easy Tricks to Protect Your Social Media Accounts
While you’re in the middle of a personal injury case, here are some tips you may want to consider:
- Turn off the location settings. Sometimes when you post something, it will automatically ping where you are and when you posted it.
- Turn off the ability for people to tag you in posts and photos.
- Make sure all your social media accounts are set to private.
- Tell friends and family to avoid talking about your case on social media.
- If you do accidentally make a post, don’t delete anything! You have a duty to not destroy any evidence – even bad evidence – that is out there. If the opposing side finds out that you tried to delete that photo or post, they could argue that you were trying to destroy evidence to hide the truth.
- Overall, the Golden Rule is: don’t post anything that you wouldn’t want the attorney for the insurance company talking about in an open courtroom full of strangers.
At Goodin Abernathy, LLP, we realize the law can be confusing and difficult to navigate. We have been serving Indiana since 1984, with a strong and reliable focus on Personal Injury, Worker’s Compensation and Employment Law. Our team of Indianapolis attorneys is dedicated to providing premiere civil trial services for individuals and small businesses.
If you need assistance with any of these matters, call us for a FREE consultation.
Goodin Abernathy also offers all of these services, in Spanish, to the Indiana Latino community. Haga clic aquí para obtener más información sobre los servicios que brindamos a la comunidad latina de Indiana – Legalmente Hablando Indy.