The Impact of Social Media
Social media use has become ubiquitous, so it should come as no surprise to learn that a lot of people like to post about their experiences with the legal system on the Internet. However, it is important to note that this is actively detrimental to their chances of winning their lawsuits because it provides opposing attorneys with readily-available arguments against them. As a result, if you are about to engage in a lawsuit, you need to exercise some social media rules if you are intent on getting the best results possible.
How Should You Handle Your Social Media Accounts Before Your Case?
You should remember these social media rules whenever you are involved in a lawsuit:
- First and foremost, you should set your social media posts to private so that no one except those that you trust can see them. Of course, this is reliant on your friends list being filled with people that you trust rather than random strangers, meaning that you should put extra effort into screening friends requests. Something that is particularly important because law firms have been known to send friends requests in an attempt to collect information for their cases.
- Second, you should post absolutely nothing about your lawsuit. For example, if you are tempted to post a picture of your car after you have gotten into a car accident, you should forget about it because it can be used against you in your lawsuit. Similarly, if you want to vent about your lawsuit, you should resist the urge to do so over the Internet. This is particularly important because even if your social media posts have been set to private, you can still be asked to disclose them in the process of discovery.
- Third, you should not post content that could work against your chances of success in your lawsuit. For example, if you are making a claim for compensation for your personal injuries, you do not want to post photos of you having fun with your friends because that can be used to argue that you are exaggerating the extent of your issues. Please note that this rule extends retroactively. For example, if you have posted content about a previous injury, an attorney can use that to argue that your current state is partially due to that previous injury rather than entirely due to your more recent injury.
- Finally, you should make sure to speak to all of your friends and family members about your lawsuit so that they know not to include you in their social media posts. After all, law firms can collect information from your friends and family members’ social media accounts as easily as they can collect information from yours. In fact, they will have probably have an even easier time collecting from your friends and family members because at least one of them will probably have very lax rules about who can see what they are posting.
Of course, social media is a complicated topic, meaning that there is more of relevance than can be passed on within a few short paragraphs. If you are interested in learning more about managing your social media accounts while you are involved in a lawsuit, please contact us at your earliest convenience, particularly if you need some legal expertise and experience on your side.