Why You Shouldn't Post About Your Wreck on Social Media

don't post on social media after a wreck

So why shouldn't you post about your auto accident on social media? Simply put, it can hurt your accident claim. 

A few quick thoughts. If you were in a minor accident with little damages and no injures, this article might not apply to you. However, if you were in a major accident with serious injuries, or if you were in an accident that's going to go to trial in front of a judge and a jury, then you should stay away from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and all the others. 

Why Insurance Companies Are Not Trying to Help You

Let's say you're driving down the highway when Speeding Sam whams you from behind. You're seriously hurt as a result.

You file a claim against Sam's insurance company - he caused the wreck, so it's his job to pay for all of your damages and injuries. This is the start of the claims process. 

During this time, it's your job to prove to the insurance company that their insured (Speeding Sam) caused the wreck and that the wreck caused your injuries. You can't simply point fingers at Sam and blame him for speeding. You must PROVE it. It's the only way the insurance company will pay for your medical bills, lost wages, damaged vehicle, and so on. 

At this point, the insurance company will begin to look for ways to lower the value of your claim. They're a business, after all, and the less money they pay out in claims, the more they get to keep for themselves. Sadly, this gives them an incentive to devalue or deny claims whenever they can. 

How Social Media Can Hurt Your Claim

An insurance company has good reason to check out your personal accounts - they want to see if they can find any reason to devalue or deny your claim. 

So let's go back to our example. If right after your wreck with Sam you start posting on Facebook, the insurance company will look at that and say, "Wait a minute. You can't have been that hurt. You were posting on Facebook right after the wreck!" 

Posting on social media often lowers your credibility after an accident. If you're seriously hurt, the insurance company assumes you can't do certain things - visit friends, walk your dog, etc. - and these kinds of activities tend to dominate our online profiles.

If you're caught posting things that even imply your injures aren't as severe as you say they are, the insurance companies will use it against you. Furthermore, if they insurance company doesn't believe that you're in serious pain, that your quality of life has diminished due to the accident, etc., the value of your case will drop. 

You may be wondering, will the insurance company even see your tweets or posts? Yes. You always have to assume they'll see. Sometimes companies hire investigators to look into these kinds of things, so you're better safe than sorry. 

When Is It Safe to Post Again?

I would wait until the full scale of your accident claim is flushed out. If it turns out you aren't that hurt and you settle with the insurance company, you're probably safe to resume posting as normal. If, on the other hand, you've got big damages and injuries and it looks like the insurance company doesn't want to pay for them, you should stay off social media until your case is resolved. 

Is Hiring a Lawyer Right for You? 

Not everyone needs a lawyer. I often tell people that if they could afforod to pay for their damages and injuries out-of-pocket if they had to, then they can also likely manage their claim alone. 

However, if you have big damages to your car and serious personal injuries, you should most certainly consult with an attorney. The first meeting should be free. 

To figure out which path is right for you, I'll point you here: How Do I Know If I Need a Personal Injury Attorney?

 

Mark A. Anderson
Board Certified Personal Injury Lawyer in Fort Worth, Texas