Guidelines for Good Social Media Use After a Car Accident
One of the things that can jeopardize a personal injury case after a car accident is posting careless comments or photos on social media. A social media post about your injuries may seem harmless, especially if you’re stuck in the hospital or at home for a long time.
But you need to keep in mind that insurance companies will try to monitor everything you say and do after a crash. They’ll look for any reason they can find to question your claim and reduce or deny your compensation. A statement or photo could give them the reason they need.
Our attorneys at The Tadchiev Law Firm, P.C., encourage you to avoid being active on social media after a Queens car accident. It’s normal to want to be in touch with friends and loved ones after a serious accident. It’s better to contact your family and friends privately. Social media is a public platform, even if your account is set to private.
You should have an experienced Queens car accident attorney review your accident and discuss your legal options before posting anything on social media. That is the best way to understand and protect your rights.
Casual “Likes” Are fine, Within Reason
If you must use social media at all after a crash, you need to keep in mind certain guidelines.
You may like other people’s posts and photos on social media, but be careful about how often you do so. Reacting to too many posts in a short period of time can make it seem as if you’re spending too much time on social media rather than focusing on your prescribed treatment plan.
Insurance companies may use social media activity such as an excessive number of “likes” as evidence that your injuries aren’t as serious as you claim.
Avoid Posting Photos
It is certainly understandable to want to talk to your family and friends for emotional support and to keep them updated on your condition as your injuries heal. A photo can reassure them that you’re getting better, but it’s better not to post or share photos at this time.
Unfortunately, posting the wrong photo can jeopardize your insurance claim. If the insurance company can find a photo of you out shopping, eating with friends, or taking part in activities, it can undermine your claim that your injuries have limited your ability to take part in activities.
An insurance company may try to use even a photo as seemingly harmless as you smiling at the camera to challenge your claim. If you’re smiling, they may argue, your injuries must not be as painful as you say they are. It is best to have the injury attorney handling your claim decide which documents or photos to share with the insurance company.
Keep Conversations Minimal
The longer you talk online, the more likely it is that you’ll say something that could harm your case. Whatever statement comes back to haunt you will likely seem harmless at the moment. You will want to keep any online conversations very brief if you must be online.
Being careless with your phrasing, saying you’re sorry about a car accident, or making other innocent mistakes could jeopardize your claim. Keep your online conversations brief and focused.
You want to avoid saying anything that gives an insurance company grounds to question your claim. The best way to do that is to stay offline.
Don’t Discuss the Accident
Talking about the accident on social media is absolutely off-limits.
If you slip up and say something that contradicts your official statement or casts you in a bad light, you could damage your chances of recovering a settlement.
Check-In with Friends Offline
Tagging yourself when you’re out with your friends or family is a common use of social media. It’s something you should avoid doing after an accident. If you’re in good enough shape to go out with your family or friends, the insurance companies will argue, then your injuries must not be serious.
Insurance companies sometimes hire private investigators to observe crash victims and look for signs of insurance fraud. If you check in somewhere on social media, it makes it much easier for the investigators to track your movements.
Don’t Discuss Your Medical Treatment
You should not discuss your injuries or medical treatment online.
The only people who should know about the medical treatment you are receiving are those closest to you, such as your doctor, your spouse, your parents, and your lawyer. They are the only parties you can be sure are looking out for your best interests.
Posting updates about your medical progress can make it look like your injuries are less severe than they really are, especially if they end up worsening as your case progresses.
If you comment on your injuries, an insurer may look for any inconsistencies in your public statements on social media and the information on file about your injuries to challenge your claim.
Don’t Talk About Conversations with Your Lawyer
You should not disclose publicly any conversations with your lawyer. These conversations are legally protected for a reason.
Posting something like “My lawyer said I could get a big settlement!” could make it sound like you are more focused on obtaining a windfall than recovering your health.
The insurance adjusters play a significant role in determining how much compensation you receive. Their perception of you is important, so do everything you can to present yourself in a good light.
If you have additional questions about a New York car accident case, the Queens car crash lawyers at The Tadchiev Law Firm, P.C., are ready to answer your questions and assist you. Contact our office today to learn more.