Many attorneys, paralegals, HR professionals, and professional service providers steer clear of email when sending legal notices (or notices they are legally obligated to send). Some incorrectly think of email as a medium for only casual or inconsequential correspondence. The truth, however, is that email is often even better than courier or postal delivery for notices with legal implications — but only when coupled with a service that provides certified proof of electronic delivery, time of delivery, and exact message content.
In this week’s Tech Essentials, we highlight two business cases where well-known and respected enterprise companies used RPost’s Registered Email™ technology (available in RMail) to win sizeable judgments and avoid potentially lengthy and costly legal disputes.
Counterfeit Hermes Products – IP Infringement
Attorneys successfully served court papers entirely by email, allowing a $100 million judgement against operators of 34 websites selling counterfeit Hermes goods. Federal district court judges in New York allowed Hermes to serve by email because RMail’s Registered Email™ certified e-delivery feature was used, providing verifiable proof of delivery to the courts.
Joseph C. Gioconda, Attorney, Counselor at Law and Founder of Gioconda Law Group PLLC, a brand protection litigation, investigations and strategy law firm, instructed his firm’s process server to send the court’s orders to the defendants using RPost’s Registered Email™ messages, so that they could provide irrefutable proof of legal delivery, content attached, and time received in a format that would be court admissible.
Employment Dispute Resolution
A large multinational food services corporation with more than 400,000 employees worldwide sent a series of Registered Email™ messages to notify its employees of a new dispute resolution policy. In the email, employees were provided a means to opt out of the new dispute resolution policy. Those that did not opt out of the policy would agree to resolve any disputes with their employer by arbitration. Each notification letter was sent via RMail so that the corporation could legally confirm successful delivery to each employee with Registered Receipt™ email records containing legal proof of delivery.
More than a year later, a former employee sued over an employment dispute and claimed that he had never received the notification letter and was therefore not obligated to consent to the new dispute resolution policy. He wanted to pursue his claim in court rather than by arbitration.
RPost management showed in its deposition that this particular employee had not only received the notification email but had also opened the message. This information is easily accessible with a Registered Receipt™ record, which stores a certified record of message contents and detailed, verifiable information about when the message was sent, delivered and opened.
Where else might proof of email receipt be needed? Real estate brokers and title companies need to prove that various terms and disclosures were delivered to their clients in compliance with the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule. Registered Investment Advisors need to confirm that their clients received performance statements, invoices and notices about regulatory or tax changes. All employers should be able to prove that they successfully delivered an employee handbook, changes to dispute resolution policies and COBRA notification documents.
Risk management plans are always useful for any professional services provider or business to have. But sometimes it can be something as simple as being able to prove you sent an email that has the biggest impact on your business.