NORTH Idaho Real Estate Pro

head_left_image

Beware of what you put in an E-Mail - It could be ruled as a Binding Contract

Be careful of what you say in an e-mail.  It could be ruled as a Binding Contract!! Homes for Sale, Coeur d'Alene Idaho

 "As much as communication originally written or typed on paper, an e-mail retrievable from computer storage" is proof of a deal, the court said.

It now appears that our emails are being considered "In-Writing."  E-mail and Handwriting are now one and the same according to a ruling of the Appellate Division, First Department of State Supreme Court in Manhattan, N.Y.

A lawyer at Thompson Hine, Mario J. Suarez, says that adding a disclaimer on e-mails may help. The e-mail disclaimer may read something like the communications "shall not be deemed an offer, as no documents are binding unless and until executed."

This has all come to light from a court case dealing with a breach of contract in a commercial real estate transaction--case--Naldi v. Grunberg-- The court's ruling, which also applies to residential transactions, is expected to bring some clarity to how legally binding e-mail is in real estate.

Both the lower court and the Supreme Court Justices affirmed that e-mails are binding in real estate negotiations, which is perhaps the most important implication for buyers and sellers.

You may want to rethink any emails you may be sending...

Source: "E-mail May Be Binding, State Court Rules," The New York Times (Feb. 17, 2011)


CONTACT INFO:

Pam Jank, CRS, GRI, ABR, CNE, RRS, Realtor(c)Pam Jank, CRS, GRI, ABR, CNE, RRS, Realtor(c)
Your North Idaho Real Estate Pro
www.SellingNorthIdaho.com - Your Free Local MLS Property Search Link
208-661-2282 or Toll Free 800-829-2555 ext. 1275
Coldwell Banker Schneidmiller Realty
1924 Northwest Blvd, Coeur d'Alene ID 83814
 

 

property.contact_company
Equal Opportunity HousingEqual Opportunity Housing

 Lake Coeur d'Alene

Comment balloon 8 commentsPam Jank • February 22 2011 04:06PM

Comments

This could make things interesting.  Just something else we have to be aware of.

Posted by Cheryl Malone (Windermere Van Vleet) over 7 years ago

pam- I have always considered an email to be proof of intent, or even as part of the paper trail that should follow when dealing with buying and selling.  I never put anything in an email that I wouldn't want to live up to!  Interesting case, though.  We are entering new territory daily it seems...

Posted by Jennifer Prestwich, Your Castle RE Colorado (Henderson, Thornton, Broomfield and Westminster) over 7 years ago

To be on the safe side.. I've added the Disclaimer:  The communications "shall not be deemed an offer, as no documents are binding unless and until executed"  after the end of my signature on emails.

Posted by Pam Jank, Your Coeur d'Alene & North Idaho Real Estate Pro (Coldwell Banker Schneidmiller Realty) over 7 years ago

Pam, I am so glad you wrote about this. I personally love email, specifically for later, when memories fade it is not he said she said, here it is "your honor" in writing.

Posted by Endre Barath, Jr., Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002 (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices) over 7 years ago

Andre, I file all of my email correspondence.  I treat it just like written correspondence.  Always have... but I think the disclaimer is a good idea.

Posted by Pam Jank, Your Coeur d'Alene & North Idaho Real Estate Pro (Coldwell Banker Schneidmiller Realty) over 7 years ago

Like chess, don't take your finger off the king or queen before you read the fine print. Any fine print.

Posted by Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573, Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker (MOOERS REALTY) over 7 years ago

Andrew, I do believe that is a Good analogy for this situation

Posted by Pam Jank, Your Coeur d'Alene & North Idaho Real Estate Pro (Coldwell Banker Schneidmiller Realty) over 7 years ago

Pam, Good points.  We should all be careful with what we say whether electronic or written.

Posted by Tim Jank (Jank & Associates) over 7 years ago

Participate