For plaintiffs involved in personal injury cases, de-activating their Facebook, MySpace or other social media accounts may be the difference between winning and losing. That’s because their postings might be construed as misleading or contradicting to their injury claims. With the increased use of social media as evidence in personal injury cases, the law firm of McMahon & Allgreen is warning the public about the possibility of social media self-incrimination.
When it comes to social media postings, most people think their privacy rights are covered by the 5th Amendment. Recent rulings; however, have shown that this is not the case. Over the last few years, many courts have ruled that since members of social media sites allow others to view their profiles, pictures and postings, these are not considered confidential or privileged.
Today, a judge can order plaintiffs to provide user names, log-ins and passwords to an insurance claim attorney, giving the court access to both public and private postings. The attorney can use any activities recorded on the plaintiff’s social media sites to contradict the plaintiff’s claims of permanent injury or physical limitations. Postings of inappropriate behavior may also be used to sway a jury about the plaintiff’s character.
Many insurance companies evaluating claims do not wait for a court order. They hire companies to infiltrate all of an injured claimant’s social media accounts and provide a report to the claims adjuster documenting all of the activities of the accountholder with the goal of trying to show that the claimant is not injured, or is exaggerating an injury.
McMahon & Allgreen have seen the power of social media make or break a client’s case. In an attempt to raise public awareness of the pitfalls of posting on social media sites, they are offering information and insight to anyone considering opening a personal injury case. For those already involved in personal injury cases, the best course of action is to de-activate all social media accounts and stop posting altogether until the claim is resolved.
About McMahon & Allgreen Attorneys at Law
For over 20 years, McMahon & Allgreen have been specializing in personal injury and insurance disputes. Both John McMahon and Chris Allgreen have also been employed as attorneys for insurance companies. This gives them the unique perspective of seeing cases from both sides of the aisle. For more information about social media and self-incrimination, please visit www.macandgreenlaw.com.
Visit http://macandgreenlaw.com/ for more information.
Name: John McMahon
Organization: McMahon And Allgreen
Address: 21900 Burbank Blvd. 3rd Floor ?Woodland Hills, CA 91367