You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of law. If you can’t recite this portion of the Miranda Rights, you haven’t watched enough crime television!
But herein lays a current need for resolution: what qualifies as saying? In the days of a digital atmosphere, it is growing increasingly difficult to determine which modes of outgoing communication are fair game at trial. In recent cases, personal injury attorneys have fought for the use of social media activity as evidence.
Although our social profile might be guarded as public, the personal information we share is essentially broadcast onto a public space. Once you post, you can delete from your own wall or activity log, but the comment or photo still remains out in this intangible, digital space.
In a personal injury dispute, social, public behavior can be used to match or verify stories that correspond with the victim or defendant’s story. For example, if a victim is claiming to have been experiencing brain damage since December, but their social profiles show them going out, sharing inspirational quotes and working on projects all through December and March, there will be an evident gap in this victim’s claim.
Of course, this type of meta data is not reliable for a person’s state of well-being. We know well by now that many social platforms and profiles are carefully curated to show one’s best attributes, interests and general productivity in life. That said, the evidence is considered more speculative that certain.
Online activity will continue to be a grey area in legal matters. Past opinions, judgments, photos and timelines can be used to better understand both sides of trial. They might serve to aid or work against any given case. One note we should all be taking is to take our social and online presences seriously, because as of now, pretty much anything we can, say or share can be used against us in the court of law.
A professional personal injury lawyer can help you better understand the current state of legal affairs involving digital documentation. To get in touch and work alongside a super legal guide, contact Blaut Weiss Law Group.