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Could social media hurt your personal injury claim?

It seems almost everything we do today potentially ends up in front of millions of eyes. Posting things on social media has become as common as brushing your teeth — whether that's the dinner you're about to eat at that fancy new restaurant in your West Virginia neighborhood to adding a new puppy to your family.

You might want to think twice, though, about posting anything regarding being injured — whether that's in an accident or from a slip-and-fall incident. You may impede any personal injury claim by doing so should you decide to pursue compensation.

The social media sabotage

If you suffered a broken bone, head trauma, concussion or any other injury associated with an accident, you're likely pursuing damages for two things:

  • Expenses you incur as a consequence of the injury, like hospital and rehabilitation costs
  • Pain and suffering resulting directly from the injury

You will probably need to call upon people to corroborate these injuries, such as witnesses, doctors and physical therapists. It's the job of the defense to try to refute your claims and your social media pages may be just the place to do that. If you claim to be in undue pain and post photos on Facebook of you and your friends frolicking on the beach or riding a giant coaster, that may be all the proof needed to have your claim thrown out the window.

When social media is not your friend

Everything you post on social media is potential fodder for the defense trying to disprove your personal injury claim. Social media posts are public record, so anything you post could be up for grabs for the defense to mount an arsenal against your claim. The only things that are off limits are private messages.

When in doubt, leave it out

Overall, when you're seeking compensation for a personal injury, it might be in your best interests not to post on social media at all about your situation. It might even be best to stop social media interaction and posts altogether for a while. If you simply can't refrain from the occasional post, it may be wise to have your pages set to private. Asking your family and friends not to talk about your situation would also be prudent.

Lastly, you might consider talking to an attorney for advice. He or she will be able to provide guidance on other issues that might affect your claim and how best to move forward with the pursuit of compensation.

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