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Technology and the Personal Injury Lawyer November 12, 2008

Posted by Attorney Jonathan Groth in Drunk Driving, Personal Injury Law.
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I was recently introduced to Lawyers Weekly USA.   They wrote an article about investigating social networks in civil cases.  If you scroll down this page you’ll see my previous post on this topic.

I’m not surprised that this has become a “hot topic.”   I can’t stress enough how important it is for personal injury attorneys (or any litigator for that matter) to be aware of today’s technology.  How long does it take type a name in google and yahoo? 

Liability disputes in car accident cases and especially drunk driving cases are ripe for social network investigation.   If someone is drunk and causes a car accident it is important to know if they had a history of drunk driving.  Was that drunk driver aware of the potential harm they could cause by getting behind the wheel while drunk again?  Comments on their blog or myspace page are important to discovery before filing a lawsuit.  It could mean the differnence between filing a claim for only compensatory damages or adding a claim for punitive damages.

Jon Groth is a Wisconsin Personal Injury Attorney handling cases throughout Wisconsin and most recently in West AllisSheboyganPlymouthand Germantown.

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Comments»

1. Sandra - November 12, 2008

I was reading somewhere in your articles the definition of a “Dangerous Dog”. It seems to me that this only pertains to a dog that has bitten or attacked someone, and not just an owner of a pitbull that has done nothing wrong. Alot of pitbulls are loving animals with very loving owners. I guess what I am saying is, that it is very unfair to ban all pitbulls when the majority has done nothing wrong. Why blame the good ones?Sandra

2. jonpgroth - November 12, 2008

Sandra,

I agree. Pitbulls that don’t have a history of causing damage or biting aren’t subject to double damages. That law applies to all breeds not just Staffordshire Terriers. Wisconsin law does not single out any particular breed as inherently dangerous.

I have stated that my experience is that I receive more calls from victims of pit bull bites than any other breed. This could be because of nature or nurture. I’m not an expert enough to give an opinion on the cause.

I know there are many nice pit bulls out there. I won’t dispute that. But, you also have to understand that there are a lot of dangerous pit bulls out there too (again, either because of their owners or something in the breeds make up).

Some municipalities have decided to ban pit bulls. That’s democracy and representative government. They could also decide to ban yorkies or labs.

Thanks for the comment!

3. Tracey Reilly - November 12, 2008

Social network sites and personal injury suits are going to get tricky. People don’t realize that defamation laws apply to the Internet just like newspapers, but there is going to be a lot of gray area here. Here is one suit someone won: http://wainjurylawblog.com/uncategorized/false-facebook-profile-lawsuit-results-in-43767-verdict-in-landmark-london-england-defamation-case

4. jonpgroth - November 12, 2008

Tracey,

Thanks for the comment. I read the post you linked to. I agree that this part of the law is going to get interesting. I handled an invasion of privacy case (my first trial) regarding the release of medical information. In that case the at fault person released the information to just one other person. Just think if they would have posted it on the internet!

Thanks again for the comment.

5. Google Alerts and Litigation « Jon Groth’s Wisconsin Personal Injury Weblog - November 21, 2008

[…] Injury Law. Tags: Wisconsin Personal Injury Attorney trackback I wrote about this topic a few weeks ago.  There isn’t much to add other than an interview I recently gave to the Wisconsin Law […]


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