In the 20 years I have represented people in Bozeman, Montana, with workers compensation claims and personal injury claims, I have been amazed at the lengths with which insurance companies will go to try to drum up a fraud claim. Insurance adjusters are trained to believe that one in four claims made is fraudulent. There is absolutely no evidence to back up this statistic but brainwashing adjusters, especially the younger adjusters we see today is a good business practice. The use of social media has made the job drumming up bogus fraud claims easier for insurance adjusters.
When an insurance company receives your claim, the first thing they do is find your social media accounts. If you have a Twitter account or a Facebook page, your accounts will be found. If you are shown on the beach drinking beer, they will know. If you post images of yourself out hiking or having fun with friends after your injury, they will be used against you. I’ve had two jury trials recently where defense counsel introduced photographs of my clients from Facebook. The defense can introduce these into evidence without telling me or my client that they possess the photos in the first place. Shutting down your social media is absolutely critical and must be done immediately after an automobile collision because the information contained in your social media can and will be manipulated.
It is critical that you not discuss your case on social media. Contrary to popular belief, you have not won the litigation lottery. Your friends and families may believe otherwise. It is critical to keep the fact that you are involved in an insurance claim to yourself. Family members and friends may come to you with their hands out. To protect yourself, it is imperative to keep the status of your case to yourself and, should you receive any money, keep that information private. Anything you say about your case on social media will be manipulated and used to make you look bad.
In complete contrast to having won the litigation lottery, it is likely you will not receive a financial windfall. The money you receive will likely be sent to other people in the form of payment for future medical treatment and other costs. Shutting down your social media is an absolute must. You can still stay in touch with friends and family without posting on Facebook or Instagram. At our office, we insist on, at a minimum, placing your Facebook settings at their highest privacy level to keep the insurance company’s eyes out of your private life.