London law firm Withers is set to pay £1.6m ($2.6m) unless it appeals a recent judgement against it. The High Court in London found that an assistant in the firm "misremembered" what was said in a crucial telephone call.
In Wellesley Partners LLP v Withers LLP  EWHC 566 (CH), Mr Justice Nugee was forced to try to work out what was said in a call between a client and the solicitor he was instructing. No note existed of the call, although the judge said that the absence of a note did not "in some way count against the solicitor in forming a view as to where the truth lies."
"I don't understand why don't people record their calls," says Intelligent Voice® CTO Nigel Cannings. "When I qualified as a lawyer over 20 years ago, we didn't have access to this sort of technology. But there is no excuse today."
"Workflow, speech to text and low-cost recording technology mean you can capture every important call and have it placed directly on a client file. When there is an issue of 'who said what?', the person with the recording wins every time."
This is not the only case in recent times when the absence of a telephone recording led to the collapse of a case. In a court case in 2010, Guy Hands accused Citigroup banker David Wormsley of misleading him into overpaying for EMI Group by pretending that a rival private equity house Cerberus was also planning to make a bid, even though he knew it was not. He claimed the misrepresentations took place in a series of telephone calls. But in the absence of any records, the case was dismissed. An $8.3 billion dollar case.