Keep Accident Details off Social Media, Attorney Says
Brookfield's Jonathan Groth says investigators and attorneys for insurance companies look to use those statements to their advantage.
Facebook is a fantastic place to share photos of the kids or insights about the latest flick.
It also seems like a great place to keep family and friends updated on the healing process after an auto or occupational accident.
But according to a Brookfield lawyer, Facebook and other social media platforms are home to investigators, lawyers and insurance companies who are gathering kernels of information in order to defend their clients.
"There is no reason to put (your) injuries online because … words can have different meanings," said attorney Jonathan Groth of the Groth Law Firm in Brookfield.
"Words can be used for however the person who is reading wants to use them …If it's going to help the insurance company, they are going to use it to their advantage," he said.
Groth, who specializes in representing plaintiffs in personal injury cases, recommends not to discussing online accidents that may eventually involve a settlement or litigation.
According to Groth, insurance defense attorneys will start surfing the Web as soon as they get a new case or a new claim.
"The best thing to say is nothing at all really," he said. "I recommend not going onto Facebook and not posting immediately afterwards and certainly thinking before you do that kind of stuff. You can post about the kids getting great Christmas presents but don't post about how you are feeling after a collision," he added.
Two attorneys and three staffers work at Groth's law firm, located at 13035 West Bluemound Road. Because it is small, the firm is able to focus on each individual client and give them the necessary attention, Groth said.
"We can really care for and help people who are suffering and having problems because of a collision, a fall or nursing home neglect or whatever it is," he said.
Groth said he is both an attorney and a counselor, who helps clients navigate through the health care and legal system after suffering injuries due to an accident.
"It's odd to say this because I hate to prop up my competitors, but I do the same thing as the big guys who advertise on TV do," he said. "I hope, however, I do it differently and with more of an interest in the client's well-being."
In addition to spending time litigating cases, he is on the phone with bill collectors, insurance companies and doctors on behalf of his clients.
"I am the person that they come to so they can worry about getting better," he said.
Groth, has been practicing law in Brookfield for more than a year, graduated from Marquette Law School in 2000.
"I wanted to be a jazz musician when I grew up but that did not work out so I went to law school instead," Groth said.