Personal injury cases come up when a physical injury, such as emotional or bodily injuries sustained. These cases usually require the plaintiff to be compensated in various ways depending on the nature of the injury. However, typically compensation covers medical bills for pain caused/diminished quality of life.
The most common causes of personal injury cases are claims that result from road (motor) vehicles, accidents at the workplace, and medical injuries resulting from medical and occupational diseases. Inevitable instances can affect the plaintiff’s compensation claims, and one of those cases is social media presence posting.
Recently, the world has revolved around social media for reasons that may be a bit perplexing to some. People rely on social media platforms like Tik Tok, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for multiple things ranging from keeping up with friends and family to creating visibility for their businesses.
Furthermore, the constant need to share even the minutest details of their day-to-day activities on social media has led to certain unpleasant situations. One of those unpleasant occurrences will be if you have a pending insurance claim.
Social media presence posting affects insurance claims when there’s an accident. There are various scenarios where social media presence posting can impact your injury case, and it varies according to state laws. In the state of California, posting details on social media concerning personal injuries or accidents can be used to reduce or altogether avoid any compensation claims being given to the plaintiff since documents, images, and videos posted online are considered public written documents by the law.
There are a couple of cases where your social media posts can be used against you by the law and will hurt your personal injury case. Some such cases include:
- Taking Pictures of the accident scene and posting them on social media platforms is now subject to public scrutiny. It can be structured to appear like injuries sustained are more trivial than the plaintiff portrays and can easily be twisted, resulting in reduced compensations. Pictures and the like should be reserved only for the plaintiff’s attorney to serve as evidence for a case.
- Posts that look like you’re admitting to guilt or anything that could be twisted to seem like you apologized will hurt your case.
- Discussing anything that is remotely linked to your personal injury case.
- Responding to seemingly innocuous questions concerning the state of your health.
- Updates concerning your recovery.
- Social media rants concerning the case proceedings or unrelated situations can be used as a case against your character.
- Pictures or videos indicate any day-to-day activity, like recreational and sporting events, trips taken, and social events you attended.
- Being frequently tagged in activities by friends or family.
- Posting/commenting on anything relating to the accident on social media while a personal injury case is ongoing could lead to inconsistencies in one’s claims, affecting the case negatively.
- Any post that shares your location at any point in time (Check-in) could reflect you being at places that could trivialize your claims.
Social media posting presence is considered public information in California and will most likely be used in court if the opposing side’s attorneys deem it fit. Avoid certain situations and take the necessary steps to ensure the success of your personal injury case. Some of the steps you can take include the following:
- Avoid posting anything while a personal injury case is ongoing. Regardless of how careful one might try to be while posting social media content about a case they’re involved in, there’s a considerable possibility of slipping up and dropping information that contradicts an initial claim.
- Keep all conversations with your attorney confidential until the case is closed and family and friends are included because it will be linked back to you. Furthermore, even when you dial back on social media use, ask your family and friends to exclude you from posts and keep a close watch on the content you’re tagged in.
- Engage and accept follow and connection requests from only people well-known to you until the case is closed. Otherwise, avoid all new requests, especially from unknown people.
- Making your social media content private is a step you can consider to limit the reach of your content. Although it is not a license to disregard all the cases cited that could affect your case. It’s simply a precaution while you take the necessary steps to ensure your content will ultimately not hurt your Personal Injury Case.
- Avoid making posts you must delete, as this might lead to sanctions.
- Consult with your attorney on what content is fit for sharing before making any post. Although ultimately, if it can be avoided, stay off social media entirely until the case is closed to get a fair trial.
However, with all social media precautions known, it’s also essential to know the limitations when considering filing a personal injury lawsuit in California. Hence, you’re well-equipped with all the necessary information.
The plaintiff can only file a personal injury lawsuit within two years from when the injuries or accident occurred. Afterward, you don’t have any legal right to demand compensation from the defendant.
The exceptions to this limitation include:
A “delayed discovery,” where the 2-year period starts when the discovery is made.
If the defendant moved out of California before the lawsuit, an extension could be granted on those grounds. The entire period in which the defendant is out of the state is disregarded.
The 2 years limitations may also be delayed because the plaintiff is below the age of 18 or if the plaintiff is not mentally fit. In both situations, the limitation starts to apply once the plaintiff is of age or mentally fit to file.
However, certain personal injury cases have different statutes of limitations. The lawsuit must be filed within 6 months if the defendant is a government entity. Other cases with different limitations include cases of Medical negligence, Rape, and Domestic Violence.
That being said, it is wise to consult and obtain a Personal injury attorney promptly to begin the processing of filing a case after an accident. You should also seek proper legal counsel concerning how social media presence posting can affect your personal injury case to ensure the chance of success.
For Expert Help…
If you have questions regarding a personal injury case, Bojat Law Group has a team of seasoned and experienced attorneys that can help you with answers and get you the full compensation you deserve. Call us today for your consultation.