3 Ways Social Media Can Negatively Affect Your Auto Accident Claim

3 Ways Social Media Can Negatively Affect Your Auto Accident Claim

Social media is no longer just a place to occasionally reconnect with an old classmate. It has rapidly become one of the most popular pastimes on the planet. In fact, the most recent statistics show that about 77 percent of all Americans have a social media profile on at least one platform. This means over 2 billion people are interacting on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or some other outlet daily. With these numbers on the rise, it’s no wonder that insurance investigators turn to these profiles as a way to validate claims. Here are three ways social media affects those claims when it comes to auto accidents.

Pictures can be deceiving

If you claim injuries due to an accident, your social media pictures can present a very different story. In one case, a lady claimed extensive injuries due to a fall at a store she visited. When claims adjusters investigated her social media platforms, they discovered she was still very active in her collegiate activities of cheering and softball. After some further surveillance to substantiate the claims, the suit was quickly dismissed.

The point is that even if you’re not intentionally attempting to defraud your insurance company, you never know which social media pictures might portray you as more active than they think you should be. It’s best to stay off of social media completely during any court proceedings following an accident.

An innocent post might hint at fault

Insurance investigators look closely at the dates and times of social media posts to gather evidence. For example, say you post something about the crazy traffic at the 10th Street and Broadway intersection right before you have a fender bender with one of the new Ford 2018 vehicles in front of you. Using this information, the defendant’s insurance company can now claim you were distracted with your cell phone usage, and that you caused the actual accident. Even if you were at a complete standstill due to a traffic jam, it’ll be hard to prove you were completely alert at the time of the incident.

Confidential information could be exposed

Attorney-client privilege is a real thing. Whatever you divulge to your accident attorney stays between the two of you. You’re also entitled to doctor-patient confidentiality with regards to your medical records under the same type of regulations. However, should you divulge statements or information shared during these consultations, it becomes public access and no longer covered by any agreements or laws.

In these situations, an attorney has very strategic plans regarding what information is shared and when it is divulged. Giving up unnecessary statements on social media could greatly jeopardize your case and put your attorney at a disadvantage. It’s advisable not to post anything about your accident on social media and not to accept strange friend requests during your proceedings. You never know who might be trying to get inside knowledge about your case.

An estimated $80 billion is lost every year to insurance fraud, so it’s no wonder that insurance companies and legal organizations are cracking down on this behavior. To protect yourself and make sure you are not accused of wrongful actions, limit your social media posts to things unrelated to your accident, stay off your phone at all times when driving, whether stopped in traffic or moving, and make sure your profiles are set to private in order to limit viewing. Taking the proper precautions and keeping your social media a place for friendly interactions can help protect your privacy and keep your lawsuit in the courtroom.