What to Do With Social Media If You Have an Active Case
Especially in the areas of personal injury, criminal, family, and employment law, evidence garnered from social media has played an immensely crucial role in numerous court cases. So, when you have an active court case, whether it’s a criminal or civil case, the number one rule is always to not post anything that has to do with your court case on your social media pages.
Our lawyers are always shocked when we see some of our clients’ posts on social media when they know they have a case in court. It can be a picture, a comment liking a certain picture of somebody else, or anything that can be misconstrued or used in their court case, so you should just avoid posting anything altogether.
DO NOT Delete Posts or Photos on Your Social Media Accounts
Instead of deleting posts, you can make your social media accounts private and update your privacy settings while still keeping them up. You can also delete or remove posts or photos if you back them up and keep a copy. Please watch our easy tutorial on how to do that here.
Preserving relevant evidence on social media is critically vital because failing to do so can result in significant consequences. You can face harsh penalties if you remove evidence that could be used in your case. If it's a criminal case, you could be charged with obstruction of justice. Likewise, in a civil case, you could be charged with spoliation of evidence or something that can be used against you at trial.
The other party will argue that you had all this evidence on social media, and you removed it. The judge may even instruct the jury to put a negative reference on your social media accounts because you have tampered with them. You can be penalized with fines and even held in contempt.
You must not delete anything unless you keep a backup, and the reason you want to keep that backup is in case the other party asks for your social media information during discovery. When this happens, you will be able to provide them with that information even if it's not readily available online anymore.
Ultimately, you should always ask your lawyer about the specific things you should or shouldn't do if you have an active court case because they can have far-reaching effects on the outcome of your case and can even lead to additional problems that you're going to have to deal with in the future.
Connect With Our Skilled Florida Injury Lawyers Now
Whether you are dealing with a personal injury claim or criminal charges, you must always be mindful of what you post and delete on your social media accounts. Otherwise, you risk making your situation worse and being penalized by the court, particularly if you already have an active case in court.
If you need legal guidance on your personal injury or criminal case, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our Florida lawyers here at Tragos, Sartes & Tragos. You can schedule a free evaluation of your case by calling 727-441-9030 or sending us an online message.