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“Who Said What When” is at the Center of Most Disputes

Oscar Mix-up – Lessons Learned

Most would agree that “who said what when” is at the center of most disputes. In today’s email-centric world, many turn to their “Sent Folder” or “Inbox” to demonstrate who said what when. They may forward these emails to the people with whom they are in dispute, or may print the email to serve as their record.

Before relying on this simple text record, it is essential to consider how it will stand up to scrutiny if it's content authenticity, timestamp of sending, or fact of successful transmission is later challenged.

London’s Legal Technology Journal published an article citing a poll of the top myths and misconceptions of email that, if not properly understood, can leave your organisation relying on email practices that leave you exposed to risk or may render your email records useless to defend you in a dispute around who said what and when. 

The poll identified the most common myths relating to email that most business executives, lawyers, and other professionals believe.

Internal vs. Internet email: ‘I copied myself and received the copy’.  Receipt of internal email within the organisation does not prove the message was transmitted/delivered via the Internet.

Read Receipts: ‘I requested a read receipt so I will know when they receive the email’. Read receipts are simple text files that can be easily forged. They prove nothing about content. The recipient can easily opt not to return the receipt.

Email Archive Offerings: ‘I save everything in my archive. I can prove what they received’. Your archive provides a record of what content you claim to have sent, but not what was received.

Email Delivery: ‘When I click send, they receive the email.’ Not all business email is delivered, Ferris Research states that 3% of non-bulk, business-to-business Internet email goes undelivered.

A solution is to use RMail for email proof. The RMail system sends the information as a Registered email message, returning a durable, verifiable, and court-admissible record for proof with high evidential weight.

RMail services have been implemented by many organisations for email proof and legal compliance. Watch this RMail “Email Proof” Video.


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