Client Social Media Monitoring for Personal Injury and Disability Lawyers

Case Law

Smith v Jarnell, 2020 ONSC 6433

In Smith v Jarnell, the plaintiff claimed that he had suffered permanent and serious injuries as a result of a motor vehicle accident. The plaintiff further argued that his injuries caused him significant pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, loss of income earning potential and ability to participate in activities of daily living to the same extent that he did prior to the accident.

The defendant sought production of all the plaintiff’s posts and photos from his social media accounts that showed him participating in activities or going on trips since the accident. The defendant argued that the social media evidence was relevant based on the information from the plaintiff’s examination for discovery. The plaintiff had advised in discovery that he had private Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat accounts. He undertook to preserve those accounts, but refused to produce all social media posts and photos that involved activities he had done or trips he had taken. However, the plaintiff was not asked questions in discovery as to whether the postings were relevant to his alleged limitations. He also stated that he rarely posted on social media. The Court held that there was no basis to justify an order for production of the plaintiff’s social media platforms. The defendant’s limited questions in discovery did not sufficiently establish that the plaintiff’s social media platforms contained relevant information to the claim.


Social media is being used as evidence in personal injury cases and you can no longer ignore what your clients post online. Private Footprint is a powerful tool that allows lawyers to quickly view, organize, and make sense of the overwhelming volume of social media content generated by clients. You can easily monitor social activity for each client separately, flag specific posts, and quickly generate detailed reports which document your client’s lives before and after life-altering events.

Contact us today to learn more about Private Footprint and how you can start protecting the value of your files.