Can Social Media Affect My Personal Injury Claim?

Photo of a couple reading a letter about an injuryAccording to Pew Research Center, in 2014, 74 percent of adults who used the Internet also used social media sites, a number that has continued to rise in recent years. Social media is a valuable tool for keeping in contact with your friends, family and others as well as for networking and connecting with others. But you should be wary of social media if you are involved in a personal injury claim, because the things that you post could affect your case.

When a person files a personal injury claim, it is usually because that person has suffered physical injuries and is seeking damages to cover things like medical bills, lost wages and more. Injury victims may also seek noneconomic damages for pain and suffering. To substantiate these damages, the injury victim will call on medical experts, witnesses and more to testify on behalf of the claimant. But while the claimant is seeking this, the defense is seeking any and all evidence to show that the claimant is misrepresenting the severity of injury or is not suffering the degree of emotional distress he or she claims.

Imagine, for example, that someone is in a car accident and is claiming that he or she suffers chronic pain and an inability to enjoy physical activities that he or she once did (cycling, for example). If that claimant were to then post photos on Facebook showing that he or she can still ride a bike without any appearance of pain, then the courts can use that to reduce the amount of damages the claimant can receive.

Your social media pages are public record. It is best to avoid social media entirely when pursuing an injury claim.

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