How Can Social Media Affect My Disability Claim?
It seems like everyone these days is on social media sharing details about their lives. The rise of sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat have allowed us to post personal information. Information that we may not realize could be damaging to a disability claim and investigation. While you may be careful posting photos and comments, it is important to understand the far-reaching scope of social media sites. A scope that often goes beyond your personal control. This begs the question then: How can social media affect my disability claim?
First, understand that Administrative Law Judges (ALJ) and Examiners are only human. While laws prohibit them from searching you out on the internet, it doesn’t mean that they don’t. You may think something is harmless. However, they may interpret it otherwise. You would not want to walk into your hearing with administrators who have already formed an opinion of you.
We’re not trying to scare you away from all social media forever. But you need to be aware that all your posted information, past and present, could be publicly visible. We are suggesting that you are dishonest in your claim, but we feel it is a good idea to complete an audit of all your accounts. Here are some suggestions to ensure your online presence is as clean as possible.
Social Media Guidelines
Friend or Foe?
Evaluate all your “friends.” make sure you know everyone, and avoid the temptation to accept all friend requests. In fact, you may want to go through and delete or unfriend anyone with whom you are not familiar. It might sound paranoid, but why would you want strangers to know your business anyway?
Immediately set your profile to private, utilizing the maximum privacy settings available.
Keep Your Posts Neutral
Never discuss details of your case, or express public frustration. Better yet, make no mention at all of your accident or treatment. Those who matter the most in your life will know and be there to support you.
Stay Quiet About Your Condition
Avoid discussing recent activities, physical exertions, any limitations or abilities. Never post or make a comment about what you can or cannot do because of your condition.
Tagging is a No-No
Ask your friends to avoid tagging you in any photos. Understand that even though you are not posting incriminating photos, if they tag you, it could be found by merely performing a Google search.
Review Past Posts
Lastly, go through all previous posts and edit or delete anything that refers to your condition. And, from here on out be cautious about future posting.
Post with a Purpose
When all is said and done, your social media accounts probably won’t have much bearing on your case. However, it is better to be safe than sorry. Let’s be honest, do you really want all of the world to have a front-row view of your private life? From here on out, make sure all your posts have a purpose.
Still wondering how can social media affect my disability claim? Contact the experts at Disability Support Services. We have a team of representatives to assist you with this and any other concern about your claims.