September 16, 2019 Substantive Law

Companies, Beware: E-Mails Are Forever

By Anthony R. McClure

Reprinted with permission from Litigation News, Summer 2019 (44:4), at 4-5. ©2019 by the American Bar Association. All rights reserved. This information or any or portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association.

Corporations, take notice: If a company fails to observe corporate formalities, it can be required to produce electronic communications—including informal e-mails—upon a shareholder’s demand for “books and records.” The question is whether the company “observes traditional formalities, such as documenting its actions through board minutes, resolutions, and official letters,” or whether the company “instead decides to conduct formal corporate business largely through informal electronic communications.”

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