Fitness Tracker Data Used in Personal Injury Cases
The technology in modern fitness tracking devices can provide important data in personal injury cases.
A Canadian case last year involved a personal trainer who had been injured in an auto accident. Using the data from her Fitbit fitness tracker, her attorney was able to demonstrate the severity of her injuries by proving that her activity levels had lessened after the accident. Her recorded activity post-accident was evaluated against that of the general public and showed a reduced maximum level of activity when compared to baselines for someone of her profession and age.Fitness Trackers Record Important Data
Fitness trackers like Fitbit, Misfit, Jawbone and Garmin sense user movement and record data like heart rate and steps taken. The user can then track progress against individual fitness goals as well as distance traveled and calories burned. Newer models track sleep quality and body mass index and have GPS capability.
Generally, in a personal injury case, the injured party must prove the severity of the injuries. Traditionally, evidence like doctor examinations, test records, eyewitness reports and proof of lost work is provided but some of these are clinical interpretations. Measuring the severity of a victim's injuries is not always objective and can even be biased.
But there is growing acceptance that the data from fitness trackers is valid evidence and an accurate measure of activity levels before and after an accident. These trackers have been dubbed the "black box" of body activities, recording important data just like the black boxes that record airplane movements.
Of course, fitness tracker data can harm a case as well. Take for instance the example of a Florida woman who claimed that she was sexually attacked at a private home in Pennsylvania. By analyzing her personal fitness tracker, investigators showed that her activities were quite different than she alleged and she was subsequently charged with making a false report and tampering with evidence.
GPS information can pinpoint the user's location. This can be important evidence in a personal injury case or can backfire if the user has lied about his location.
There have already been challenges to fitness tracker data accuracy in some cases and privacy rules have been questioned as well. A warrant may be necessary to obtain a tracker if the user is reluctant to provide it. But these trackers are here to stay in all kinds of cases where a record of personal activities can provide important evidence.We Can Help with Any Type of Personal Injury Case
If you or a family member has experienced an auto accident or any other personal injury, please contact us immediately. Our experienced attorneys have the right expertise to fight for the compensation you deserve. Please call us for a free consultation. Attorneys Diana Santa Maria and Laura D. Dolin, personal injury attorneys in Fort Lauderdale, will fight to secure justice for you and your family. You can reach us at (954) 434-1077 or contact us via the website.