If ‘friends’ can see Facebook photos, so can opposing counsel

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If ‘friends’ can see Facebook photos, so can opposing counsel

Just because you set your Facebook privacy setting to allow only “friends” to see your photos doesn’t mean they won’t wind up as Exhibit A in court.

In Nucci v. Target Corp., a case that “stands at the intersection of a litigant’s privacy interests in social media postings and the broad discovery allowed in Florida in a civil case,” the Fourth District Court of Appeal said the “relevance of the photographs overwhelms Nucci’s minimal privacy interest in them.”

In a January 7 order in Case No. 4D14-138, Judge Robert Gross, with Judges Matthew Stevenson and Jonathan Gerber concurring, wrote: “In a personal injury case where the plaintiff is seeking intangible damages, the fact-finder is required to examine the quality of the plaintiff’s life before and after the accident to determine the extent of the loss. From testimony alone, it is often difficult for the fact-finder to grasp what a plaintiff’s life was like prior to an accident. It would take a great novelist, a Tolstoy, a Dickens, or a Hemingway, to use words to summarize the totality of a prior life.

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