It is not a surprise that in our modern and technologically savvy world, text messages are often used in various types of business communications. However, can text messages be binding when disputes arise?
In a recent Ontario case, 1475182 Ontario Inc. o/o Edges Contracting v. Ghotbi, the court confirmed that a text message can constitute a signature in a contract. In this case, a dispute arose between a dentist and a construction company. The dentist failed to pay the construction company the remainder of their invoice and the construction company sued based on a text message, which was interpreted as acknowledging the debt of the dentist from the construction contract. The court emphasized that we live in a modern digital world and thus the court must consider non-traditional means of affixing one’s signature to a document, including digital signatures.
Individuals in business transactions should refrain from using text messages for business communications because this can often lead to misunderstandings and disputes. If you are involved in any type of dispute, you should inform your corporate lawyer in Toronto of any text message communications relevant to your matter. Even if you are not involved in a dispute, it is always prudent to save all of your text message communications in case a dispute arises in the future.
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