The Top Ten Mistakes That Could Screw Up Your ICBC Claim, Mistake #4

This series, by BC personal injury lawyer Paul Mitchell Q.C,.will explain the Top Ten mistakes to avoid with your ICBC personal injury claim.
The articles will give tips on how to ensure you do not make serious mistakes that could be fatal to your claim.
For 10 issues of Legal Alert, Paul will focus on one mistake you should avoid, and what you should do instead to ensure your ICBC personal injury claim is not prejudiced.
This month, Mistake # 4, Posting Content on Facebook That May Hurt Your Case

Mistake # 4 Posting Content on Facebook That May Hurt Your Case
ICBC and other insurance companies access sites such as Facebook, Blogger, MySpace, and other social newtorking sites in order to investigate injury claims.

If the site has poor security settings, ICBC just searches the site. ICBC has specifically hired staff whose job it is to search the internet for all Plaintiffs.

ICBC thoroughly searches the sites looking for photographs, notes, blogs, etc.  Their purpose is to find information or postings that could be damaging to the case in front of a Judge or jury (eg. drinking or being drunk at a party, engaging in sports or other physical activity, travelling to far off destinations for vacations, etc).

Some people post content on social media site that is not truly representative of how much pain or depression they are experiencing, in order to increase their popularity.

They sometimes, in an exagerated manner,  portay themselves as being very active, happy, and socially engaged people, particpating in many different sports and other social activities, and minimize their pain or true feelings.

ICBC will use this against the claimant in an attempt to prove that the claimant is able to do everything they did before the accident, with little or no pain, and that their depression, social withdrawl, or other emotional or psychological symptoms are not authentic.

ICBC also searches for notes on-line where a Plaintiff has talked about the case, such as how the accident occurred, how he/she is feeling, what he/she will be doing next weekend, and so on.

Generally, ICBC looks for anything online that will hurt the claimant’s case.

We recommend claimants use the maximum privacy controls available on each site, to limit viewing of photographs and personal information. As well, we recommend that you avoid posting any photographs of yourself, and refrain from discussing how you are feeling, or any other details about your case.

Remember that nothing is truly private online, and that everything online is accessible to anyone with a computer.

You may think you’re safe by using security settings, but this is not the case. ICBC has also been successful recently in getting a court order requiring the injured party to give ICBC lawyers access to the injured party’s entire Facebook site, including deleted material, regardless of the security settings.

Moral of the story? If you are involved in a personal injury lawsuit, (or any other lawsuit for that matter), be very careful what you post on your Facebook or other social networking site.

Don’t make a mistake.

Make your case.

Paul Mitchell, a BC personal injury lawyer who has extensive experience with severe injury claims, including brain injury claims, spinal injury claims, death claims, ICBC claims, medical malpractice claims, and other catastrophic injury claims.

He acts for injured clients all over BC and Alberta, and will not act for ICBC or any other insurance company.
For more information on this article, or for a confidential discussion of your personal injury claim, contact Paul Mitchell, Q.C. at 250-869-1115 (direct line), or send him a confidential email at [email protected]

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