Anything posted on social media could be admissible in court as evidence if it’s related to the case. With increasing frequency, lawyers are using social media posts as evidence to support or defend their clients’ cases.
If you are in the midst of a car accident claim, be exceptionally cautious of the dangers of social media during your case. Be mindful of how you use social networking and what others post about you.
Using social media as courtroom evidence is a trend on the upswing in a car accident, wrongful death, and other injury claims. If something is blogged, tweeted, or posted on Facebook that somehow contradicts your injury claim, the opposing party can bring it to court to refute your case.
Social media evidence includes photos, videos, comments, and status updates on all the following sites:
Claims can be denied and settlements reduced if the opposing counsel effectively uses your social media accounts against you.
For instance, let’s say you suffered a disabling injury in your car accident. Then a friend posts a photo on Instagram that she took of you and her rock-climbing prior to your accident. Even if the photo was taken before your accident, if your friend posts it afterwards, the other party’s attorney may try to use it to discredit your injury in court.
Using social media as valid evidence isn’t just a legal theory, it’s being used successfully in more and more claims around the country. It really does pose a threat to car accident victims’ claims.
Take a look at a couple of cases affected by social media:
Your social media faux pas doesn’t have to be as outlandish and brash as the above examples in order to work against you. Even a simple post about you “being sorry for the accident” (which could be misconstrued as you accepting blame for the accident) or a photo of you smiling and holding your child (which could negate your injuries or claims of pain and suffering) could damage your case.
Some attorneys may recommend completely disabling your social media accounts until your case is settled. There are just too many things that may go wrong. Even you are extremely careful, remember that anything your friends tag you in can also be used as evidence. Since it’s nearly impossible to monitor everything, temporarily disabling your accounts may be the best bet.