The Dangers of Facebook to Your Disability Claim

February 6, 2013

Attending your child's recital or having dinner with friends, taking a trip, even picking flowers from your garden may seem like innocent activities, and it may be all you feel like doing when you're disabled; however to an insurance company, this sometimes translates into "if they feel well enough to do that, they can go back to work." When you're disabled and unable to work, it's understandable that you might spend more time on the computer updating your status and posting pictures on various social networks like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to stay in touch with family and keep them up to date on your condition. However, posting about your activities, volunteer work, social events or travel can cause serious harm to your disability claim.

Recently we have seen a dramatic increase in insurance companies' interest in our clients' Facebook pages. We are receiving requests for access to our clients' Facebook accounts and copies of all postings, pictures, events and even personal messages on Facebook, dating back to the date the account was established. This can add up to hundreds of images and multiple pages of information, much of which may not be revealing, but is personal to you and is information that you would not want shared with everyone. Insurance companies will try to use this information against you to argue that you are not disabled or no longer disabled, and either deny or terminate your disability benefits. Therefore, when you file a disability claim, it's prudent to stop all postings on social networks immediately in the event that the insurance company has plans to conduct a background check or surveillance. This will minimize the insurer's access to your private life and information that could lead to your disability claim being denied.