Postings on MySpace or Facebook Can be Harmful to Your Disability Claim

Facebook is one of the most popular websites in the world.  But experts have been warning teenagers that it’s not a safe place for private information to be posted.

Now applicants for social security disability should heed that advice as well.  Private disability insurers and the Social Security Administration are increasingly turning to sites like Facebook to dig up evidence that can be used to deny a disability claim.  Consider this:  to qualify for benefits, an individual alleges that his/her disability affects functioning in a variety of ways that makes it impossible to work a full-time job.  These impairments to functioning may include physical (can’t walk, climb, crouch, bend, stoop, lift).  Photos or videos of you dancing, hiking, even gardening that you post to a Facebook page could be harmful to your case.

It’s not only photos that can harm your claim.  Facebook users often post their status:  This weekend I am climbing Mt. Hood!  I’m doing Cycle Oregon!  I’m running in Hood to Coast!  You may be joking…or it may be true but not the whole truth – for example, you’re riding in the support vehicle in Cycle Oregon.  But your announcement can raise red flags about your claim.  The bottom line – be careful what you post!