Facebook Photos Assist in Challenging Injury Claim

In my continued efforts to track BC Caselaw addressing Facebook photos in personal injury lawsuits, reasons for judgement were released last week by the BC Supreme Court, Prince George Registry, highlighting the successful use of such photos in challenging an injury claim.
In last week’s case (Welygan v. Willms) the Plaintiff was injured in a 2008 motorcycle collision.  Liability was admitted by the defendant.  The Plaintiff advanced a claim alleging longstanding and disabling physical injuries.  The Defendant acknowledged some level of injury occurred but disputed the extent and severity of the claim.  Ultimately the Court rejected many of the Plaintiff’s advanced damages and in doing so provided the following comments addressing Facebook photos which were put into evidence:
 [107]     She was shown a Facebook photograph of her performing on stage and she says she does not recall what she was doing at the time…
[331]     …her Facebook photograph that shows her singing on stage in no apparent discomfort, and the evidence of Mr. Wall that he saw her singing and dancing on stage and jumping off the stage…
[369]     I find it persuasive that the plaintiff has been able to perform on stage with her band and twist her body as is shown in the photograph of her on stage. If her back is as badly injured as she says it is, I do not believe she would be able to perform as the photograph indicates.
[370]     In addition I accept the evidence of Mr. Wall that he saw her performing on stage with her band after the accident and she was dancing around on stage and in the crowd. When she came off the stage she sometimes put her hand on the stage and jumped off it, a distance estimated by him to be about four feet.

bc injury law, facebook, Mr. Justice Truscott, Welygan v. Willms

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ERIK
MAGRAKEN

Personal Injury Lawyer

When not writing the BC Injury Law Blog, Erik is the managing partner at MacIsaac & Company, based in Victoria, B.C. He is also involved with combative sports regulatory issues and authors the Combat Sports Law Blog.

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