Social media has become a staple in many people’s lives. It’s a great way to keep in touch with friends and family, share news and experiences, and connect with others who have similar interests. But sometimes social media can have a negative impact on our lives—even our car accident claims.
Insurance companies are notorious for digging up information about claims in order to reduce the amount of compensation. Surprisingly, viewing your social media accounts after an accident is usually included in their investigation. To avoid hurting your claim the DiPasquale Moore team is here to go over how a social media post can impact your claim and some best practices for handling an accident.
How Can Social Media Be Used Against Me?
When you post something on a social media platform, you’re sharing your information with dozens to even thousands of people. If you just so happen to comment on your car crash, you could be setting yourself up for your statements to be used against you by an insurance adjuster or lawyer.
Your Comment Admitted Fault
After a stressful accident, people tend to have a lot to say about their experiences. Whether it’s them wanting to apologize, or admitting to some portion of the fault, it should never be said. Avoid saying things like:
- “It was all my fault.”
- “I kinda hit them.”
- “I feel so bad about the accident.”
- “I couldn’t stop.”
- “I didn’t see them coming.”
Kansas and Missouri have different laws when it comes to accidents within the state. Depending on that state and your fault level, you may not be able to collect compensation. For more information on the comparative negligence laws in both states, we recommend reading this blog.
Although social media has become one of the many ways to communicate with family and friends and keep followers up to date on what’s happening in your life, it’s best to stay away from social media until you get in touch with a lawyer.
Your Friend Left a Questionable Comment
Even if you take extra steps to secure your confidentiality after an accident, your friends can still ruin it. If you do decide to tell some friends, make sure to remind them not to leave comments on your page about the accident. A comment like “Maybe if you didn’t drive so fast…” can be used against you.
You Ruined Your Confidentiality
Remember, you have complete confidentiality when talking with your attorney about your case. But that can simply be derailed with the touch of your screen. Never discuss the conditions and circumstances of your accident. Avoid speaking about the severity of the accident, and details about the event.
Also avoid speaking about your health, no matter how much pain you are in. Whether it’s mental, physical, or emotional pain, refrain from expressing your condition on apps all social media apps.
You Appear Healthy
We all know that recovering from a car accident can be a lengthy process, and you deserve to celebrate small wins when it comes to making progress on your healing journey. However, celebrating these wins can put your compensation at risk.
If the insurance company sees tagged photos of you recently out at a bar, they may use this against you to state that you were exaggerating your pain. You should also avoid posting any photos of you engaging in physical activity like going out, hiking, or even on a stroll in the park.
How Risky is Posting?
Even if you think posting an old photo a few days after your accident will be fine, chances are, it’s not. Insurance companies and the other party’s attorney can twist your post to their advantage. For example, even if you post an old photo, an insurance company will jump through hoops to prove that the image is current and that your condition isn’t as severe as stated earlier.
Well, Can I Use Social Media at All?
We advise following these best practices before hopping on your phone:
- Do not share any details of your accident, even if your account is set to private.
- Do not accept any random follower or friend requests from anyone you do not know.
- If your account is publicly viewable, put it on private.
- Refrain from posting until the claim is over.
- Do not post anything negative in regards to the other party. Even if they were at fault for the accident, negative comments could put you in a bad light.
- Lastly, if you’ve already posted something, do not delete it in the event the other side asks for them. This can be a form of tampering with evidence in the case the other party’s defense has already requested a discovery request for access to your socials.
So, What’s Next?
If you've recently been in a car accident, you may be feeling overwhelmed and uncertain of what to do next. One of the first things you should do is seek legal counsel. An experienced attorney can advise you on your next steps and help you navigate the legal process. They can also answer any questions you may have about your rights and options.
Consider contacting the DiPasquale Moore team if you are in the Kansas and Missouri area. We know the ins and outs of state laws, and can help you get the compensation you deserve to heal properly. We have offices in Kansas City, St. Louis, Topeka, and Columbia.