Being “Social” Can Affect Your Personal Injury Settlement
Billions of people use social media daily, with some people posting every detail of their life on display for their friends and family. What many don’t realize is, regardless of privacy settings, social content can still be found.It’s important to ensure your personal injury clients are aware that their social media posts can heavily affect their claim… at any time.
Opposing counsel and insurance companies will scour social media channels to see if there is anything that can be used to discredit a case during litigation. But after litigation ends, we must remember to advise our client and their family of how their social interactions can hurt their case even after it is over.
In almost all of our personal injury cases, there is a detailed confidentiality clause. This not only applies to us, it also applies to our clients. And when it comes to discussing money received from a lawsuit, sometimes it is difficult for our clients not to share online.
A recent story in the news echoes this reality, where a young woman’s Facebook post cost her family $80,000.Her father, a69-year-old,former Florida headmaster, had just won a hefty lawsuit against Miami’s Gulliver Preparatory School. After being dismissed from his job, he filed an age discrimination lawsuit and won. The settlement was worth $80,000. Shortly after, his daughter posted about the settlement and the social post quickly made waves. The Third District Court of Appeal threw out the lawsuit for violating the settlement’s confidentiality agreement.
Don’t let this happen to your clients. Be sure to share these tips:
1.Never post details (photos OR text) related to your case even after a settlement is reached
2.Always set your profiles to private
3.Don’t accept new friend requests while your personal injury claim is ongoing
We’ve seen it firsthand and, in the news -social media posts can cost your client to lose money intended to help them significantly. Don’t forget to discuss the importance of this topic with your clients, so this does not happen to you and your firm.