Since its arrival in the late 1990s, social media has undergone a complete transformation. What was once strictly for fun and entertainment is now a multi-purpose platform used for a variety of reasons, such as a data-gathering tool for big businesses.
In addition to its many changes in personality, social media’s evolution now includes a much broader user base. In the past, older sites like MySpace were largely seen as an online channel for young people, however, that is no longer the case.
As of 2020, there are an estimated 3.6 BILLION people worldwide engaging with social media. And out of the billions of people and organizations that use social media, Boulton Law Group maintains an interest in one particular group: Insurance companies.
Insurance companies scour the internet looking for information, pictures, and videos related to personal injury claims. Their aim is to use social media posts as evidence to contradict an accident victim’s story and/or injury status.
In fact, we have spoken to a number of people who damaged their personal injury claim by posting “harmless details” to their various social media accounts. Sometimes we have been able to help these people after the fact, other times the posts were interpreted as too incriminating.
With that in mind, we have put together some tips to help ensure your social media accounts do not ruin your personal injury claim.
How to Social-Media Proof Your Personal Injury Claim
1) Google Yourself
A quick Google of your name will produce various results, many of which will include your social media accounts, posts, pictures, etc.
If there is anything in Google’s results that are deemed suspicious by the insurance company, they can and will use it in an attempt to discredit/devalue your personal injury claim.
If you have not yet hired an attorney, you can attempt to remove some of these results yourself. Otherwise, it may be more beneficial for you to contact an Indiana personal injury lawyer who has experience with appropriately handling personal information on Google.
2) Do Not Post Accident or Injury Details
One of your attorney’s main responsibilities is to collect evidence that will support and verify your claim, ultimately making your case stronger. Do not sabotage your claim by creating social media evidence to the contrary!
In short, anything that you post about your accident or injury is public information and can be used against you. And while many people may think they are being careful on social media, there are several seemingly innocent ways a post or comment can be misconstrued.
For example, if you injured your back in a car accident and the insurance company finds a post-accident picture of you holding a baby, they could claim that your injuries are not that severe.
Boulton Law Group has witnessed a number of soft-tissue injury claims become jeopardized by a simple picture. In some cases, the picture served as strong counter-evidence that decreased the value of the victim’s claim.
3) Increase Privacy Settings on All Social Media Accounts
All of your social media accounts will have privacy settings options that allow you to limit what is seen by the public. We recommend that you make these as strict as possible so that it decreases the chances of the insurance company being able to sift through your account(s).
Many people are also unaware that information on their friends’ social media accounts can also be used against them in a personal injury claim.
Social media sites like Facebook will give you a number of options to limit how you appear in your feed as well as your friends’ timelines. By safeguarding your settings, you can prevent others from “checking you into a location” or publishing posts that feature you.
If you have questions about how to increase your privacy settings, your attorney can walk you through the steps to help secure your accounts.
4) Unplug From Social Media!
The best possible course of action is to simply avoid all social media following your accident. In fact, we commonly advise our clients to avoid or remain inactive on all social media accounts until their case has concluded.
Our recommendation includes all activity on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, personal blogs, and any other channels/platforms that could inadvertently cause problems for your personal injury claim.
Will Social Media Affect Your Personal Injury Claim?
No two accidents are alike. This means that your personal injury claim will have its own unique strengths and potential weaknesses.
To help ensure that your social media accounts do not jeopardize your case, we recommend that you request a free case evaluation from an experienced Indianapolis injury attorney.
Boulton Law Group offers all Indiana accident victims and their families a Zero Fee Guarantee. This means that you will never be charged a consultation fee and our firm receives nothing until we win your case.
Attorney Matt Boulton has more than 20 years’ experience helping Hoosiers recover maximum compensation for a variety of personal injury claims.
Matt is sought after statewide for his track-record of results and his approach to client service. No matter the size or type of accident, Boulton Law Group aims to ensure you get treated like family.
To speak with Matt, call him direct at 317-350-2680. Or, if you prefer to write to us, please use our confidential contact form. Matt personally reviews each web contact sent to our firm.
We look forward to hearing your story and learning how we can help you!
Attorney Matt Boulton is an award-winning personal injury attorney with more than 20 years of experience helping seriously injured people throughout Indiana reclaim what was taken from them. His firm was created for for the client who expects exceptional service and passionate, successful legal representation.