What you should do with your Facebook page if you have a car accident, personal injury or workers compensation case.
By Chad Rankin
If you have been involved in car accident, personal injury, or workers compensation claim, the insurance company, defense attorney, your employer, and/or their private investigators will be looking at your Facebook page and any other social media that you use. They will look for anything to reduce or eliminate your case. If they find something on the public portions of your Facebook page that even remotely looks like it conflicts with the injuries or limitations in your case, they will ask a Judge to have full access. Many Judges will give them full access to your Facebook page and other social media.
Things that you should do with your Facebook page and other social media when you have a car accident, personal injury, or workers compensation case:
Try to refrain from posting anything on your Facebook page and avoid being in photographs that will be posted by others. My clients always often tell me that they have nothing to hide, so they should not have to worry about posting things on Facebook. Unfortunately, insurance companies, defense attorneys, employers, and/or their private investigators benefit if they can make a mountain out of a molehill. Even the most innocent photograph or posting could be twisted into a potential problem for you and your case. It is best to avoid this possibility.
Things that you should not do to your Facebook page or other social media sites:
Do not delete photographs or postings that you believe could be harmful to your case. Insurance companies start investigating your Facebook page as soon as a claim is started. If they notice a deletion of arguably relevant material, you could have opened yourself to bigger problems with the Judge. A Judge has the power to do many things under these circumstances and they are all bad for you. For instance, a Judge could allow the defense to examine your entire Facebook page, regardless of privacy settings or even examine your computer to look for materials to use against you. A Judge could tell the jury that your destroyed evidence and that they should infer that the evidence would have been harmful to you. It is far better to be truthful and deal with any issues that arise upfront and honestly. Everybody hates when someone deceives them; especially juries and judges. You do not want to appear to be deceptive when you have a car accident, personal injury, or workers compensation case.