Want to Ruin Your Personal Injury Case? Keep Using Facebook.

Social Media CollageOne of the main points of an injury claim is to be paid or compensated for your injuries. The way to prove how much your case is worth is to prove how the injury changed your life. Proving things you can no longer do or enjoy, or being limited in your ability to enjoy those activities can be a big part of your case.

Facebook is proving to be an invaluable method of monitoring these changes. Photographs and posts act as a live and in-color timeline of the plaintiff’s life before and after the accident.

Savvy Facebook users are familiar with the various privacy settings available: just me, friends only, and friends of friends. But, these settings don’t mean a thing when it comes to lawsuits.

Facebook’s terms and conditions allow for material contained in a post to be shared by Facebook at its discretion or under court order.

In January 2015, a Florida Court of Appeals decided “the photographs posted on a social networking site are neither privileged nor protected by any right of privacy, regardless of any privacy settings that the user may have established.” Nucci v. Target Corp., No. 4D14-138, 9 (Fla. 4th DCA, Jan. 7, 2015). The court relied on the fact that even if photographs are only accessible by your friends, there is nothing stopping your friends from sharing those photos. Moreover, the entire reason Facebook exists is to share your posts with others.

The first place a claims adjuster or defense attorney looks to find you is on Facebook.

Takeaway: If you don’t want everyone to see something, don’t post it! You would be amazed at the things people post, even though they have a lawsuit pending.

For more free tips on how to manage your social media responsibly, download our free report, Important Social Media Tips for Florida Personal Injury Victims.

 

Jim Dodson
A Florida injury lawyer, family man and avid cyclist who clients have trusted for over 25 years.