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Innovations such as social media have changed the way that you communicate with others. While it offers many advantages, social media use can also have unforeseen consequences, especially if you have a civil lawsuit pending. 

Whether you are suing a negligent party in a personal injury case or engaged in a dispute with a former employer, what you say on social media can come back to haunt you. According to Forbes, this is even true of communications intended to be private. 

Be careful what you share

It may be tempting to blow off steam about your case with a social media rant. However, there are no legal provisions in place preventing what you share publicly from coming up in court. Even private messages may be fair game if the other party chooses to disclose them or the court thinks they are of sufficient importance to order you to disclose them. A good rule to observe is that if you would not express something in public, do not post it online, either privately or publicly. If you need to vent, find another, non-digital outlet. 

Do not delete accounts

Given how potentially damaging your social media activity can be to your civil lawsuit, you may think it would be better for you to delete all your accounts while your case is in litigation. However, this is not a good idea either. It may appear that you are trying to destroy or tamper with evidence, which can have serious repercussions. It may be futile anyway because contemporary forensic recovery methods may be able to access content that you believe you have permanently deleted.