When a car and a motorcycle collide, there can be no doubt that the rider is at greater risk of injury than the driver. However, even victims with extensive injuries have been forced into taking low settlements as a result of information they have posted online in the aftermath of a crash—sometimes by posting something as seemingly harmless as a picture of themselves smiling.
After you have been injured, it is natural to want to share updates on your condition with your friends and family. While social media sites such as Twitter or Facebook are a convenient means to contact everyone at once, they are also easily accessed by opposing attorneys and insurance companies seeking to discredit your injury claim. Here are a few guidelines to using Facebook while your motorcycle injury case is pending:
What to Post (And Not to Post) on Social Media After Your Accident
- Statuses. Everything on your page should reinforce the image you are presenting to the court. It is best to post as little as possible, and if you do, you should not discuss your injuries or activities. You should avoid posting pictures of yourself, and discourage your friends from tagging you or mentioning you in their posts.
- Comments. Anyone searching for your name could potentially see all of your interactions, including your comments on another person’s page. Even a simple response to a friend’s question—for instance, mentioning a festival you plan on attending—could hurt your case. Before responding to someone else’s posts, imagine that your insurance company will be reading it.
- Case notes. In addition to refraining from posting updates about your injury, you should never post any details, however insignificant they may seem—about your case. All of your conversations with your lawyer are protected by attorney-client privilege, but if you willingly share confidential case notes online, the opposing side is free to ask questions about it.
- Videos. Uploading videos of yourself is one of the biggest mistakes you can make after an injury. Even if you are clearly incapacitated, the content in the video can potentially be used against you. Although your profile may have been set to private and you do not accept friend requests from people you don’t personally know, the people you are seeking compensation from may still be able to access anything you have posted online.
- Deleted accounts. Many victims are understandably tempted to simply delete their posts, or even delete their social media accounts altogether. However, a sudden disappearance of your online persona could raise suspicion in court, and may be considered destruction of evidence. A wiser option is to put your social media accounts on hold while your case is pending.
What If I Posted Something That Can Be Used Against Me?
Many victims make the mistake of posting online information that can potentially harm their case. You should speak with an attorney and have him or her examine your online presence for any negative evidence. Call us today at (888) 348-2616 for information on what to do next, or learn how to protect your rights in our free book, The Devil's Advocate: A Biker's Guide to Accidents & Injuries.