Did you know that of the 4.4 billion people who have internet access, 3.5 billion are active on at least one social media account? Or that the average person has at least 7 social media accounts?
Social media has become part of everyday life and many users share every up and down on their favorite platforms on a daily basis. However, it’s important to remember that when something is shared on the internet, it can spread.
Social Media & Workers’ Compensation – What You Need To Know
The reality is that anything you post on social media that can be discovered publically can be used against you.
Workers’ compensation insurance companies are always on the lookout for fraud and understandably so. Fraud is, unfortunately common, and social media is one way that fraud is commonly discovered.
For example, if a worker submits a claim for a spinal injury and states that it prevents them from lifting and that their range of motion is limited. They state that this injury prevents them from working. But then, the same worker posts a picture of themselves playing basketball with friends, showing that they have the ability to run, jump, and move with ease. This could cause their claim to be questioned.
Adjusters are trained to check the social media accounts of applicants to see if any posts indicate that their claim is not as truthful as it may seem.
Be Careful About What You Share On Social Media
Here are a few things to keep in mind about social media:
- Even private accounts aren’t as private as most users believe. This being said, adjust any privacy settings to be as private as possible and never accept a new friend or follower unless you know who they are.
- Avoid posting entirely on any account if you are currently working with an attorney on a claim.
- Don’t delete any of your accounts – this may sound odd, but you could be accused of destroying evidence in court.
- Don’t ever log into social media accounts from a work device – including a work phone – or use your work email to sign up for social media.
In addition to being extremely careful about your social media accounts, don’t use a work phone, device, or email to communicate about your case.
What Others Post On Social Media Can Impact You
It’s also important to talk to your family and friends about what they share and about their privacy settings. A post that has you tagged in it could also cause serious problems and could be easily misunderstood.
Social Media And The Law
The laws regarding social media and accessing a person’s private accounts are continually evolving. That being said, there have been cases where enough public evidence was given to prompt the court to order an injured worker to provide the login information for social media accounts.
Can My Employer Demand I Provide My Social Media Account Information?
All employees do have certain rights and that includes the rights regarding social media accounts. An employer cannot:
- Demand that an employee add them as a friend or follower.
- Ask you for the login information for your social media account.
- Ask to view your private social media account.
- Demand that you change your privacy settings.
Your employer also cannot retaliate if you assert your rights, such as firing you, cutting your hours, or docking your pay.
Schuster Law: Prepared To Answer Your Questions About Social Media And Workers’ Comp
If you have concerns about how social media posts, pictures, and videos can impact your workers’ comp claim, contact the workman’s comp attorneys at Schuster Law. Our law firm has the decades of experience you need by your side as you navigate this complex process.