posting on social media after a car accident

Many of us are accustomed to sharing the minutiae of our daily lives online, but what you post after a car accident can have significant legal consequences. Keep reading for crucial tips and pitfalls from our skilled West Palm Beach car accident lawyers, then call (561) 655-1990 to schedule a free case consultation.


The risks of social media after a car accident

After a crash, it might feel natural to update friends and family about your condition or share details of the event. However, such posts can be scrutinized by insurance companies and defense attorneys, looking for evidence that might contradict claims of injury or emotional distress. In Florida, social media posts can be admissible in court, meaning anything you share could affect your claim.

Essential tips for managing social media post-accident

Pause before posting

Before sharing anything related to your accident or injuries on social media, consider how outsiders might perceive it. Even posts meant to reassure loved ones about your well-being can be misconstrued as evidence that your injuries aren’t as severe as claimed.

Privacy settings

Check your privacy settings to ensure your content is viewed only by people you trust. Remember, however, that privacy settings are not foolproof—mutual friends with the opposing party in a lawsuit might still access and share your information.

Avoid specifics

Avoid discussing accident details, injuries, or any communications with your lawyer or insurance companies. Sharing this information might hurt your claim or accidentally give up your legal rights.

Limit activity updates

Posting about physical activities or check-ins at locations can undermine claims of injury severity. If you claim severe back pain but share pictures from a hiking trip, this could severely impact your case.

Legal considerations and guidance

Under Florida law, the opposing party can request anything relevant to the case, including social media content, in discovery. This is supported by Florida’s broad discovery rules, which allow for collecting material that could reasonably lead to admissible evidence.

If my account is private, Can I share information about my car accident on social media?

Even if your social media account is private, you should be cautious about sharing information regarding your car accident. In legal contexts, particularly in personal injury cases, insurance companies or opposing legal teams could access and use any information you share online.

Privacy settings may offer security, but they are not foolproof. For example, comments or photos you share can be seen by friends who might not have the same privacy or diligence, and screenshots of your posts could be taken and shared without your consent. Moreover, during the discovery phase of a lawsuit, attorneys can obtain a court order to access your social media accounts, including private posts, if they believe the content is relevant to the case.

Therefore, it’s generally safer to avoid discussing your accident, injuries, recovery process, or any legal proceedings on public or private social media until your case is resolved.

What should I do if I’ve already posted about my accident?

If you’ve already posted about your car accident on social media, here are some steps you should consider taking:

  1. Review and remove – Go back to your posts and review them carefully. If there is anything that could be construed in a way that might undermine your case, consider removing it.
  2. Consult your attorney – Inform your attorney about the posts. Transparency with your legal advisor will help them strategize accordingly, especially if the posts are brought up by the opposing side during legal proceedings.
  3. Limit future posts – Moving forward, limit your social media activity, especially concerning the accident or anything related to your injuries and recovery. Even seemingly harmless updates about your physical activities or emotional state could be used against you.
  4. Documentation – Before you remove any posts, take screenshots and keep them for your records. This can help your lawyer understand the context and content of what was shared in case the posts need to be addressed later in your case.

Hurt in a car crash? Call us.

Adhering to the guidelines above can help protect your legal interests. For further information or if you’ve been involved in a car accident, contact Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath to ensure your rights are protected throughout your recovery and legal proceedings.