“But First, Let Me Take a Selfie”: How Social Media Can Wreck Your Car Accident Case

We now live in a world where social media dominates our lives. Networking sites like Facebook and Instagram are more popular than ever; we’ve built a culture of oversharing even the smallest details of our lives. Many people now create social media accounts for their newborns that they plan to maintain for the child until he or she is old enough to do so. For better or worse, online social media is engrained in our culture.

Whether you take to the Internet in search of a place to share or vent, your typical audience is friends and acquaintances only. You share pictures of your travels, food, children, and even yourself. If you got in a car accident, it might even be tempting to keep your loved ones updated via Facebook or other sites—but what would you do if you knew that the insurance company could be watching?

Think Before You Post

You are at the scene of your accident, snapping pictures with your cell phone of the damage to your car. You are tempted to upload the pictures to your social media account to share with your friends that you escaped unharmed, and may post a status or two along the way discussing your recovery.

Unfortunately, the other driver’s insurance company or lawyer may be watching your every move, including on social media. Many people have inadvertently ruined their case not only by discussing details of their accident, but also by oversharing in general. Pictures of you drinking at a party or engaging in extreme sports could trigger a red flag for the defense, undermining your own case.

While privacy settings have come a long way, remember—on the Internet, nothing is private. It is best to stay tightlipped on your social media accounts while your case is pending. When vehicle repair and medical bills are on the line, your social media silence could help solidify your case.