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Social media pitfalls for personal injury victims

Social media: A talkative person's playground and a personal injury attorney's nightmare.

As the number of people using Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social media outlets increases, so does the likelihood that remarks made to friends will wind up in the courtroom. One ill-advised comment can have disastrous effects on a settlement or verdict.

While the most common advice for people involved in a personal injury lawsuit is to avoid social media altogether, it isn't the most realistic option.

It goes without saying that all of your Facebook settings should be in private mode. According to a Lexology article, however, here are four other tips to protect yourself from accidentally sabotaging your own chances of success in a personal injury lawsuit.

1. Avoid Discussing Your Case Online

Even if your settings are private, do not discuss anything related to your case on social media. This includes doctor's appointments, interactions with the insurance companies, legal meetings or your physical condition. Although Facebook and Twitter are the frequent targets of searches, anything posted on MySpace, LinkedIn, Flickr or elsewhere is also fair game.

2. Be Careful With Status Updates

Status updates can be turned against you. Think a smiley face is innocent? It may be used as a sign that you aren't really in pain. While it's tempting to share updates about your condition with friends and family, doing so could be a liability.

3. Avoid Physical Activities And Travel

Anything that shows you engaging in strenuous physical activities, even if you indicate that the activity was difficult, is a huge no-no when you're involved in a personal injury case.

Watch what others post about you as well. If you're tagged in a photo that somehow contradicts your case, ask your friend to remove it immediately. The same goes for any comments. If a friend posts on your page how much fun she had dancing with you the night before, this reflects poorly on your case. Again, the insurance companies can use it against you.

4. Suspend Your Accounts

Your accounts will be waiting for you when the case settles. In the meantime, there are too many pitfalls that you may accidentally step into if you're not extremely careful.

When In Doubt...

If something gives you pause, it's best to listen and avoid sharing it online. Err on the side of caution for the best outcome.

When it comes down to a favorable settlement, you don't want to take chances. Contending with a court case can be stressful, but dealing with one where a single post destroys your credibility can be devastating.

Learn more about maximizing your chances of obtaining compensation by talking with a skilled personal injury attorney in your area of Alabama.

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