Can Social Media Affect My Disability Claim?

woman on cell phone

With the internet, we can forge new relationships and stay in touch with old friends in ways that we never could have before social media. We can share our lives with loved ones across the world with just a click of a button.

However, it’s not just friends and family that can see what we post. It is important to safeguard our private information and keep track of who can see our posts on social media. And if you’re applying for Social Security disability benefits or are currently receiving them, you need to take extra steps to ensure your social media activity doesn’t affect your standing.

Why Should You Monitor What You Say?

bicycle

If you’re applying for Social Security disability benefits because of a condition that prevents you from walking, you may not want to post pictures of you running a 5k on Facebook.

Social Security disability benefits are meant to help those with debilitating illnesses and conditions. The monthly payments are meant only for those who are physically unable to keep gainful employment.

Because the qualifying guidelines are so strict, agents from the Social Security Administration (SSA) only approve disability benefits for claims that have been thoroughly investigated. It only makes sense that their investigation would include the applicants’ social media accounts.

Documented evidence of an active lifestyle is almost sure to sink your case right away. Even if the events occurred before you became disabled, posting about them on social media after you’ve applied could cause the agent reviewing your case to deem you fit to work, and therefore unfit for disability benefits.

How Should You Monitor What You Say?

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If you have a legitimate need for disability benefits, then you should do everything in your power to give yourself the best chance to receive them.

Avoid posting anything that might suggest you don’t actually need benefits. Did you post recently about an out-of-state family vacation? An SSA agent may see that and assume that if you are able to travel, then you must also be able to keep gainful employment. If you’d like to talk about the trip, it’s better to do so off of social media.

Another step you can take is making your accounts private. While the SSA does have rules against its agents using the internet and social media to research disability applicants, your public information can still appear if they search for it.

Making your profiles private not only helps improve your chances of getting approved, but also makes your online presence more secure.

Help from an Evansville Social Security Disability Benefits Lawyer

If you are applying for Social Security disability benefits and aren’t sure how your social media usage could affect your application, Hensley Legal Group may be able to help. Call us today or contact us online for a free conversation about your disability benefits claim.