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Do you really have to stay off social media during a lawsuit?

Do Massachusetts courts really take your social-network evidence seriously? In short: They could.

There are a variety of factors that could potentially make your social media posts dangerous to the strength of your case. For example, posts are often publicly available, timestamped, permanent and tied directly to your identity. In fact, the first thing that some defense attorneys do when they get a case is type the plaintiff's names into a search engine and comb their online accounts, taking screenshots as they go.

Anything you post online could become a major element of the defense's case. Some types of posts could even become grounds for countersuits. The simplest solution is often to stop all social media presence leading up to and during your case. Even positive posts, such as family pictures at parties, could damage certain claims. As explained on FindLaw, there are various types of pain and suffering claims. Some of these could be undermined by photos of you looking happy and contented.

You may even want to keep online chatting to a minimum, especially when it comes to the details of your case and your injuries. Generally speaking, the best people to talk to about these things are your lawyers. If you are having trouble coping, you may also be able to secure a recommendation for a therapist from your attorney. Venting on social media should probably never be an option.

An injury has the potential to make you feel isolated. Stopping your interactions on social media could amplify that feeling — but withholding your posts on social media may also be a good way to strengthen your case. 

If you need support with your feelings surrounding your injuries, it is probably best to seek it out in a private, confidential setting. However, every case is different. Please do not use this as legal advice. It is only intended to provide general information.

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