Dos and Don’ts: Social Media Use During Your Lawsuit
As soon as a lawsuit is filed, the defense will be scouring the internet for evidence to use against you. They will look for your social media pages and those of your friends, family, and coworkers. They will try to find unfavorable photos or posts where you are tagged, perhaps unknowingly. The defense will even use older images to create a narrative about your character. The following is a guide to reduce the defense’s likelihood of obtaining damaging information from your social media.
- Do not accept friend requests from anyone you do not personally know.
It may be beneficial to go through your existing friends list and weed out anyone you are not well acquainted with. The defense may pose as an ordinary person in order to keep tabs on you or look for information.
- Update Privacy Settings.
If you, your family, or close personal friends regularly post to social media, you should immediately update your privacy settings to the highest security level and advise them to do the same. You may be unknowingly tagged in public photos.
- Refrain from participating in activities that the defense could misconstrue in order to claim that you are being deceptive about your injuries or the severity of your case.
It can be hard to estimate certain suffering and if the defense can obtain evidence that you are not in as much pain as you claim it can devalue your case and lead to a lower offer.
- Instruct friends and family not to post about you or your case until it’s settled.
A man lost an $80,000 settlement due to the untimely social media post of his daughter
- Don’t vent!
Do not use social media as a pulpit to air grievances or frustrations against the defense or other parties involved in your case. These posts can be collected and used in court.
- Don’t post updates.
Though it may be tempting to use social media to keep friends and family informed about your medical or legal progress it’s important not to post photos or updates pertaining to your case.
- Don’t try to “hide” information.
Ethics prohibit you from trying to erase or hide information you may have already posted.You can take things down but do not assume that it is deleted forever or that the defense can not gain access to it. It’s important to increase the security of your pages and post with caution in the future.
If you have been involved in an accident, having the right guidance can be crucial to a positive outcome in your case. Contact the knowledgeable attorneys at Basch & Keegan for a free consultation.