Social media dangers in Your Personal Injury case

Social media is so common now that most folks have multiple accounts -Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and more.  One need only google themselves to discover the plentiful array of information that can be gleaned online about them.  

It follows then, that people who are injured in an accident, and who intend to pursue the negligent party for damages, must use social media with extreme caution.  It is completely understandable, the impulse to immediately post the bad news, "I was just in an accident... I'm in the ER... I Broke my ___" but the dangers of these posts cannot be overstated for purposes of your personal injury action.  

Plaintiffs must understand that insurance companies and their adjusters will be scouring the internet for any and all evidence surrounding the accident, who was at fault, who was injured, and the extent of the injuries.  Additionally, simply because you have your Facebook settings to "friends only" does not mean a darn thing.  During discovery, attorneys defending the insurance company can and will obtain access to your private accounts.  This grants them access to not just what you posted, but also what you posted and then took down.  As you might imagine, posts - those active and those deleted -are of great interest to jurors who are evaluating your case at trial.  

It seems more and more that people simply cannot help themselves when it comes to posting... but as a lawyer who deals with these social media issues and implications DAILY, would you please follow my recommendation that if you are involved in any kind of incident or accident, which may result in a case or lawsuit, that you deactivate your social media accounts, and keep your details private until after your case is closed.  (And, if there are confidentiality agreements signed as part of your case closure, then you must never post about the accident, your settlement, etc).  Resist that urge to post!