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Your DC Personal Injury Lawyer Explains Social Media and Your Case

The Significance of Social Media

How This Every Day Habit Can Impact Your Case

When you are injured in a car accident in Washington, DC, you have a lot to handle.  Your car may be in the shop undergoing repairs, you have doctor’s appointments, appointments with your physical therapist for rehabilitation, you may be missing work, you probably have incoming bills related to your car accident… for some people, it can be overwhelming, and most people in similar situations feel important to try to get back to the normalcy of what life was like before the accident.  However, one thing you may need to change is how you interact on social media.

The Selfie Circumstances

Sure, you’ve taken a selfie or two in the past.  Most everyone has!  It’s the culture we live in today and social media snapshots are a way to share the latest about what’s happening in our lives.  Under normal circumstances, taking and posting pictures online is fine, but when you have a personal injury case making its way through the legal system, a seemingly innocent selfie can portray an entirely different story – one that could be damaging to your case (even if it isn’t true).

Setting the Scenario

You are injured in the car accident, and you receive deep lacerations and damage to the muscles and tendons of your arm from the broken glass that shattered upon impact.  The pain was intense, and you opted to take an ambulance to the hospital, where you received several stitches to close the wound.  Because those injuries affect your ability to perform your job, you are unable to return to work until your injuries heal properly, and that requires several weeks of physical therapy, plus follow up medical appointments with your doctor.

The DC Personal Injury Lawyer you obtained for representation is in communications with the insurance company to negotiate a fair and reasonable settlement.  A few weeks later, you are cleared to return to work and can perform limited tasks. 

Fast forward to a Friday night after work, when you and your friends decide to go out for happy hour.  Your arm is in a sling to help keep it still while it heals, but as you unwind after the long work week, you decide to take it off for just a few minutes.  As you and your friends talk and have fun, you choose to snap a few group photos to share on your Instagram and Facebook pages.  A few minutes later, you feel some pain in your arm begin to set in, so you slide your sling back on and head home for the evening.

The Problems Arise

That photo was entirely innocent.  You did nothing wrong.  However, the insurance company has a team of lawyers, adjusters, and investigators whose sole job it is to justify lowball settlement offers.   That picture you took with no sling discredits your story and now the insurance company has the leverage to prove your injury must not be as bad as you have made it out to be.

Of course, the insurance company reps have no idea the pain you’ve endured, and they don’t know (nor do they care) about how your life has been impacted because of the injuries.  They also don’t understand that the reason you were so comfortable taking off your sling is because your arm needed to stretch, and you sometimes remove that sling to do just that a few times throughout the day.  However, the picture doesn’t show that, and now your settlement offer is significantly lower than what was being negotiated before that group photo.

How Can a DC Personal Injury Lawyer Help?

Your DC Car Accident Lawyer will explain that it is best to avoid all social media until your personal injury case is settled and closed.  The insurance companies will find any reason to avoid paying a fair and reasonable settlement, even if it means combing through the social media accounts of you, your friends and your family and trying to spin innocent picture into something damaging to your case.   If, in the event you have a questionable social media photo arise, you’ll need a skilled lawyer to help.  

If you have been injured in an accident, be sure you are getting the medical treatment you need and call The Lapidus Law Firm for a free consultation at (202) 587-5111.  We will guide you through each step of the legal process, treat you with dignity and respect, and will make getting you a favorable settlement our priority.  You have no obligation to use our services, but know that we don’t take a case unless we believe we can help.  Call us today to get started!

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