Tag Archives: social media

Facebook Pictures’ Use Evolving in Workers’ Compensation Cases

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In the past, I have warned about the possible pitfalls of social media on a workers’ compensation claim.

However, the Nebraska Workers’ Compensation Court has never really ruled on Facebook in the context of discovery matters in a work comp claim, meaning how much access can your employer have to your Facebook account if you file a workers’ compensation claim? 

Recently, however, the Nebraska Workers’ Compensation Court (at least one judge) has taken the position that in order for your employer to gain access to photographs from your Facebook profile, it must “make a showing of the necessary factual predicate underlying [the] broad request for access.” In other words, your employer must have a decent reason to suspect that a certain photograph or something from your Facebook account has the potential to be relevant to the work comp case before the court will simply grant full access to your Facebook account to your employer.

Therefore, depending on your situation, your Facebook may be safe from your employer to some degree. However, this is a cautionary tale to remind you that even though your employer cannot simply have blanket access to all of your Facebook photos – at least according to one Nebraska judge – it does not mean that your Facebook photos or posts are necessarily safe from your employer gaining access to them at some point during your work comp case. I think the judge in this case takes a step in right direction, but you still must be aware that anything you put on Facebook may be subject to discovery (i.e., your employer may still possibly get access to it) at some point in the future.

Rehm, Bennett & Moore sponsors recent #TDSMC (Truck Driver Social Media Convention)

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Firm owner Rod Rehm, associate Jon Rehm, and Emily Wray Stander, director of research and marketing, recently attended the 2nd Annual Truck Driver Social Media Convention in North Kansas City.

As the owner of www.truckerlawyers.com, Mr. Rod Rehm has been helping truckers through workers’ compensation and personal injury claims since the mid-1990s. So it was with a good deal of enthusiasm (and the fun of giving away around 125 insulated mugs in about 48 hours) that Rehm, Bennett & Moore chose to be a sponsor for this year’s convention.

Meeting the variety of truckers, trucker advocates, and trucking industry folks made the experience memorable for me, as did learning more about the industry itself with the many regulations, requirements, and challenges that truckers and their families face. And having recently been a volunteer coordinator of a reunion for hundreds of people, I appreciate the work that Allen and Donna Smith of www.askthetrucker.com did before, during, and after the convention!

There was the luxury of meeting others face-to-face who previously were known via “the Internets” and I even got to sit by some folks who I interact with on at least a weekly basis, if not more often. And meeting friends of friends was fun, too. Of course, there were also some excellent speakers who addressed the participants’ wide variety of experiences with social media. But it was pretty funny to look up from my phone and/or laptop to see others’ typing madly away, but also paying attention. That was encouraged by the Twitter hashtag #TDSMC. And speakers also addressed some social issues in trucking, such as stopping human trafficking and having safe places to park, that truckers encounter and can affect through their actions.

I was happy to read via http://www.truckingsocialmedia.com/ that the next convention dates have been announced: “3rd Annual Truck Driver Social Media Convention Tentative Dates: October 12th – 13th, 2013; Harrah’s Hotel and Convention Center; North Kansas City, Missouri.” I look forward to hearing more details as next year’s event approaches!

Can Facebook Affect Your Workers’ Compensation Claim?

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Follow a few rules of thumb to stay safe on Facebook.

More than likely, you’re on Facebook if you are reading this. If you are not, the chances are very good that you know a close friend or family member who is on Facebook, MySpace, or Twitter.

Most of us never think twice about what we post on these social media sites. However, depending on the privacy settings of your profile, anyone may be able to see the status update on your wall, the photo of you at a wedding, or whatever job you are currently in. That “anyone” could be the defense lawyer or insurance adjuster if you are currently involved in a Workers’ Compensation action.

Depending on your privacy settings, anyone may be able to see the status update on your wall, the photo of you at a wedding, or whatever job you are currently in.

“What do I have to hide?” you ask. Well, often times these status updates, photos, or wall postings may be misunderstood or taken out of context. For example, a status update stating “Just got done mowing the lawn” might not look very good to someone that is off work for a back injury, and it would be hard to explain that even though you mowed the lawn, it took you two pain pills to do so and caused you extreme suffering later that night that you couldn’t even sleep the price you paid in mowing that lawn.

Here’s what you can do to avoid some pitfalls from Facebook:

  1. Adjust your privacy settings so that only your “friends” can see your status, wall, and photos. Continue reading