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Goldstein and Bashner

Facebook and Lawsuits don’t mix

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  • Do you have a Facebook account?
  • Do you have any type of personal website online?
  • Do you have any pictures or information posted regarding your recent whereabouts?

 

If so and you are currently involved in a lawsuit, then it is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that you disable or temporarily remove any personal information that is on the internet. Opposing attorneys, investigators, insurance company lawyers, and adjusters  frequently “Google” your name as part of their investigation. In court they will seek copies and access Facebook accounts or anything else that contains information about you. We live in a day and age where privacy is essentially nonexistent. Everything and everyone is just one click away, and there’s no hiding the truth anymore. Many people have lost big cases by inadvertently exposing themselves on Facebook. For example, in a recent New York case, a girl claimed to be depressed and completely isolated from the world. The defendants looked up her Facebook account and found pictures of her partying and traveling on vacation. Obviously the two stories didn’t connect, and her case was no longer credible. All because of a free social networking site.

 

Another case involved a women who claimed she was so severely injured when her chair collapsed that she was limited in her activities and that the accident damaged her “enjoyment of life.” Unfortunately for her, the pictures she posted on Facebook showed her enjoying family vacations and traveling to various locations. Another danger commonly seen on Facebook—posting pictures of underage friends drinking together. These can damage a reputation and if they can be used in any way against you in a case, they will.

 

Lawyers don't limit their searches to Facebook. Twitter has proven just as costly in cases. There have been a plethora of weak cases without concrete evidence that turned to VERY strong cases overnight due to direct tweets from criminals about their crimes. This all may seem like common sense, but many people still disassociate the social media world from the real world. Well it’s time to stop and realize: social media IS the real world. One can find out more about a person in two minutes on their Facebook page than in twenty minutes talking to them. It’s time to start taking the cyber world seriously.

Have questions or concerns?

Don't hesitate to give us a call. We'll answer your questions and advise you on how to ensure your online presence does not hurt your case.

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