Fonseca & Partners

Email: enquiries@fonsecalaw.co.uk or Telephone: 01495 303124

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Social media can hurt your personal injury claim

Popular Social Networks, Gavin Llewellyn, CC

Making a personal injury claim can sometimes be a time consuming process filled with endless waves of paperwork and long court hours. However, by hiring a professional lawyer from a claims management firm such as Fonseca Law these issues can be overcome relatively easily. However, one obstacle that occasionally affects personal injury claims regardless of whether you handle the claim yourself or not is social media.

Social media is one of, if not the biggest change in the way we communicate with family, friends and colleagues as many people use social platforms as a way of keeping people up to date with their everyday activities. Therefore, it’s not surprising that people who have been involved in a road traffic accident, an accident at work or any other type of personal injury want to vent their frustration on social media sites. While this may seem innocent enough before making a personal injury claim, once a claim is made it can turn into a very dangerous and ultimately counterproductive action.

Disproving injuries

When you suffer a personal injury, our solicitors will work with you to prove to the court and insurance firms that your injuries have had a detrimental impact on your life. This usually requires you to provide medical records from your doctor which show the extent of your injuries. Insurance firms will nonetheless search for any kind of opportunity to disprove the extent of your injuries and if you have used social media to tell friends that you are off to watch a sporting event, attend a party or go back to work (whether it is full time or only a few hours), insurance firms will use these status updates to show that you are indeed capable of walking distances, sitting down for extended periods or working.

An example of the harms social media can cause is that of a victim who had launched a compensation claim after an accident which they said had caused them to suffer from a lack of concentration. The case was thrown out because the victim had posted a status about reading a book in their garden. The insurance firm claimed that a high concentration level is required to read a book and therefore the claim was not justified.

Language and behaviour on social media

People generally tend to behave differently on social media compared to in a professional environment. However, this variation can impact on a personal injury claim as a victim may come across as controlled or sophisticated in a formal environment but their social media profiles may be filled with updates and reactions which may suggest otherwise, due to the casual nature of most social media networks. Some insurers may use the language and behaviour found on social media to portray an alternative image of the claimant to the court, resulting in the court ruling in favour of the insurer in some cases.

Avoid mentioning claims and accidents on social media

If you've suffered a personal injury and are thinking about claiming, we suggest you avoid mentioning anything about it on social media. If you need to speak with family or friends it is better to use email or phone, and if you really do need to use social media we recommend taking advantage of the privacy settings and direct messages so that insurance firms cannot easily access your updates. Twitter has a protected tweets view so that only confirmed friends can see your tweets and Facebook also has privacy setting options which hide your updates from view for people who are not your friends. If you have any questions about the use of social media during a personal injury claim, one of our trained solicitors would be glad to discuss this with you.

Our team of highly qualified solicitors are ready to take on your case if you've suffered a personal injury that was not your fault. Contact our team today either through our online claim form, by phone on 01495 303124, or you can visit us in our Ebbw Vale offices.