If you’re an avid social media user, it may be tempting to document every event of your life. While this is usually fine, it is not a good idea following a car accident. Oversharing can be detrimental to your case, so consider the following consequences before you upload that photo or write that tweet.
- Photos document your physical condition
Every injury that you sustain from your accident is evidence to argue your case. However, if you post photos of yourself dancing at a bar, playing soccer, or hiking, for example, the opposing legal team could use those photos to disprove the severity of your injuries.
- Statuses count as a statement
Even if your social media accounts are private, everything you post is technically free game for the public to see. If you post a long Facebook status detailing your car accident, that will be used as evidence in court. If anything in the status contradicts what your say in court or to your lawyer, it will be used against you.
- Images of damage could contradict reality
Photos do not always tell the full story and can be misinterpreted. If you post images of your car following the accident, the damage might look different from reality. Be mindful of this and opt to not post images at all.
- The insurance company may be looking too
It’s not just the opposing legal professionals and the court who are searching your social media profiles. Your insurance company may be looking for evidence as well. Again, if anything seems to contradict what you reported to them, you may not get the compensation you actually deserve.
- Unrelated events may seem connected
The court and insurance company may also use social media to piece together a series of events, which could be a blow to your case. If you were at a party with friends before the accident, they may use a photo of you with a drink in your hand to suggest that you were under the influence, which 9.9 million people reported doing in 2013. If you posted a status or sent a Snapchat right before the accident, they may have further evidence that you were using your phone while driving. Whether these connections are true or not, it is best to be mindful that this evidence is out there.
Following your car accident, consider logging off of social media until your case is cleared up. When it comes to protecting your integrity and assets, you should be doing everything you can to help argue your position. Your attorney will have more specific guidelines, so be sure to bring social media up with them.