The Administrative Law Judges (ALJ) have started to actively Google people to find out information about them when considering Social Security case. As a Virginia Social Security Disability Lawyer, I can tell you it really is in your best interest to assume that everything you post online is out there for anyone to see – including ALJs and the other Social Security examiners reviewing your case.
I’m not suggesting you become a hermit, or that you have to portray your whole life as miserable. Just remember that everything you post online is open to interpretation and you don’t want to give the wrong impression.
If you haven’t yet applied for Social Security Disability, I recommend that you do a Google search on yourself. Find out what comes up. If you posted something that could be viewed as negative for your case, then you should delete it or at least make it private. To take this one step further, ask a friend or family member to view your public pages, such as Facebook, to get their thoughts.
In addition to ALJs and Social Security examiners, remember that other people will be viewing your online profiles. You might be surprised by how often friends or family members report possible fraud in disability claims based on what they see.
It’s very easy for people to misunderstand the nature of your health based on the selective updates you choose to post online. If you are going to apply for Social Security Disability benefits, take the time to consider if that vacation photo or extreme sports shot is worth it in the long run. At the very least, it could cause uncomfortable questions to come up in your case.
If you would like help evaluating what should and should not be part of your public record for a Social Security Disability case, call The Law Office of Sheri R. Abrams at (517) 328-5795 to make an appointment with a Virginia Social Security Disability Lawyer.