Fitness-Tracking Data and Personal Injury Lawsuits

January 26th, 2015 by Farhan Naqvi in Personal Injury

It started with pedometers and admonishments to get in at least 10,000 steps per day. As America struggles with ever growing weight issues, more and more interesting gadgets have landed on the market to help us slim our waistlines. As these devices become more advanced, however, they are starting to take on uses besides helping us cut a few pounds. Some of the more advanced devices may even start to play a role in personal injury lawsuits.

Activity Trackers Becoming More Advanced

While early pedometers only (sometimes roughly) track how many steps a person takes, the new generation of fitness trackers can do much more and do it more accurately. According to PCWorld, these new devices can provide information about a user’s sleeping habits, calorie consumption, blood pressure, and other health and activity statistics. These devices also store the data locally and sometimes online, depending on the features an individual uses. One common brand of these devices is called the “Fitbit.”The Atlantic reports that one Fitbit user’s data is now going to be used in a personal injury lawsuit.

Fitibit_Flex

Fitbit Data to be Used in Lawsuit

Fitbit data is being used by a woman in her personal injury case in Canada. According to the Atlantic’s report, the woman was injured four years ago when she was a personal trainer. She uses a Fitbit device, and her lawyers want to use the data collected by her device to show that her activity levels are still lower than they would be absent the injury. Rather than just supplying the jurors with the raw Fitbit data, it will be presented in light of the data of other Fitbit users. Since massive amounts of data from the people who uses these devices are uploaded every day, the comparison is possible. If this sort of evidence finds its way to American courts, it could be revolutionary. Rather than an injured person just having his or her own word to prove that she can not get around as well as he or she used to, there would be actual data that a jury could examine.

Data Could Also be Used Against Plaintiffs

While use of this data could be extremely useful for some injured parties, it could also hurt others. Insurance companies could theoretically get court orders to have websites storing this information to release it, and then could use that information as an excuse to deny an injured person’s claim if they are seemingly “too active” to be injured.

Barriers to Use in Courts

Since these devices are relatively new, it remains to be seen if they will be used in our local courts. There are questions as to whether the data from these devices is reliable enough to be admissible. Additionally, there are questions as to relevance. If a person gives a used device as a gift, does not regularly sync the data, has a device that malfunctions, or uses the device incorrectly, the data could be compromised.

Call Naqvi Injury Law Today

When you are injured by someone else’s negligence, you need someone who is willing to fight for you. That is why you should call the experienced Las Vegas personal injury attorneys at Naqvi Injury Law. When you call us at (702)553-1000, we can schedule a free consultation to go over the details of your case and see how we can be of assistance.


Speak with Farhan Naqvi NOW