Can Contracts Be Signed Electronically
Contracts have been a fundamental aspect of business transactions since time immemorial. In the old days, contracts were signed on paper with ink signatures. However, with the advancement in technology, electronic signatures have become a popular way of signing contracts. The big question is, can contracts be signed electronically?
The answer is a resounding yes! Electronic signatures are legally binding and have the same legal standing as a handwritten signature. It is a convenient and secure way to sign contracts, saving time and money.
To ensure that electronic signatures are legally binding, the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN Act) was passed in 2000. The act recognizes electronic signatures as legally binding and enforceable in court. Additionally, the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) was passed in 1999, which aims to establish a consistent legal framework for electronic transactions in the United States.
However, it is essential to ensure that your electronic signature meets certain requirements for it to be legally binding. The UETA states that an electronic signature is valid if it meets the following requirements:
1. The electronic signature must be linked to the signer.
2. The electronic signature must be capable of identifying the signer.
3. The electronic signature must indicate the signer`s agreement to the contract.
4. The electronic signature must be created during the signing process and tamper-evident.
There are various ways of creating electronic signatures, such as clicking a button, typing their name, drawing their signature, using a digital certificate, or biometric authentication like fingerprints or facial recognition.
Electronic signatures have made it possible to sign contracts remotely without requiring the physical presence of all parties involved. This has made business transactions more efficient and streamlined.
In conclusion, electronic signatures can be used to sign contracts legally. It is essential to ensure that your electronic signature meets the requirements established by the UETA. Using electronic signatures saves time and money and provides a secure and efficient way to sign contracts remotely. As technology continues to evolve, electronic signatures will undoubtedly continue to play a significant role in business transactions.