British Columbia

Facebook pics must be handed over in B.C. lawsuit

The right of defendants in a lawsuit might trump the right to privacy of a plaintiff's Facebook photographs, a B.C. Supreme Court hearing has ruled.

Photos allegedly show plaintiff enjoying vacations taken after car accident

Defendants in a B.C. Supreme Court case believe Facebook photos might contradict the plaintiff's claim that an accident left her with chronic pain and a diminished ability to enjoy life and earn a living. (Joerg Koch/AP)

The B.C. Supreme Court has ordered a former Victoria law student to hand over pictures from her Facebook site as she pursues a lawsuit in connection with a traffic accident.

Tamara Fric was a first-year student at the University of Victoria in 2008 when the vehicle she was in was rear-ended by a car owned by Tracy and Stuart Gershman.

Fric is suing the Gershmans, claiming the accident has left her with chronic pain and a diminished ability to enjoy life and earn a living.

But the defendants believe pictures on Facebook that allegedly show Fric on vacation, hiking, scuba diving and wakeboarding might contradict the lawsuit's claims.

Fric had argued that her right to privacy and the privacy of her Facebook friends outweigh the demands of the defendants.

But it has been ruled in a pretrial hearing that the defence must be allowed to see some Facebook photos of Fric participating in an event called the Law Games, taken shortly after the accident, and also to see photographs taken during her subsequent vacations.

It is yet to be determined if any of the pictures will be allowed into evidence at a trial.

With files from the CBC's Lisa Cordasco