With the financial issues at ICBC in the news recently it should come as no surprise that fraudulent claims are a problem. This is not just for ICBC but for all insurance companies. What people do not know is that Social Media can hurt your insurance claim even if it is a legitimate claim.
While people that do submit fraudulent claims think that it is a victimless crime, it is not. In the case of ICBC these false claims cost BC drivers more than $100 each time you go to renew your insurance. Insurance companies have always done their best to investigate false claims. In the past have used private investigators but with the emergence of social media it is becoming easier to find the fakes. At the same time it could be hurting the legitimate claims.
How? Think of these examples.
You just were in an auto accident and most people will automatically check to see how everyone is. The obvious injuries are easily spotted but others, soft tissue injuries for example, take time to manifest. The next thing people will do is take pictures of the accident for the claim. This is much easier to do now that most of us are carrying a camera with us in our smart phones. After the accident and things are taken care of, it has become common to post images online. This is innocent enough but the comments/conversations that happen online can be detrimental. “It’s good that nobody was hurt”, is innocent enough but if the injuries take time to manifest if could damage your claim.
Summer vacation is here and you were in an accident just before you were to leave. The pictures you post of swimming in Mexico, hiking in Hawaii or dancing on the cruise are all normal things to do on vacation. To an investigator on a claim that has an injury, it may seem like you are trying to fake the injury.
Some personal injury claims can take years to come to a resolution. For those instances it is normal for your memory to be not as clear as when the accident happened. Statements years after the accident can then seem as inconsistent as what was posted on social media right after it happened. Could you remember exactly how long the recovery of an injury took years later? Inconsistencies in statements and what is posted online can then hurt your credibility as a witness.
You may just want to pause a minute before you post that picture of you climbing a mountain. It may save you in the long run.
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