Email Disclaimers Help Limit Liability
Using E-Mail and the Internet can exposure your business to increased liability. As an employer, you are usually held liable for anything in e-mails for your company as well as the contents of your website. Chevron was held liable for more than $2mil when female employees claimed e-mail was sexually harassing. Obviously, this was the action of one errant employee, but the company was stuck with enormous liability.
An E-Mail disclaimer should contain the following items:
- Confidentiality. Email disclaimers should contain a warning the information is only for the addressee and is confidential and proprietary. This is one step in protecting yourself from claims of people who receive forwarded email.
- Contracts. Clearly state the e-mail does not create an offer, acceptance or contract unless a separate signed document is negotiated.
- Non-Reliance. Warn the recipient that any statements or opinions made in the email are not to be used or relied upon unless issued in a formal opinion.
- Does not create a customer relationship. Make clear that mere email communication does not create a customer or client relationship.
- Viruses and Worms. warn the recipient to scan for viruses, worms and Trojans and that the email may contain security preach issues. Further, the email may appear legitimate but actually may have a forged header claiming it was sent by you.
- Return Information. Offer to pay for the return of any information.
Disclaimers will help protect your company.
Call Ronald J. Cappuccio, J.D., LL.M. (Tax) at (856) 665-2121 to discuss this further.