E-Signature: Law Commission Report on Electronic Execution
The Law Commission has recently published an excellent synopsis of the current state of play for e-Signatures in England and Wales - and some future recommendations.
The reality has for some time been that e-signatures typically work for a number of different documents requiring execution in England and Wales. However, there remains a surprisingly strong undercurrent of distrust and uncertainty over e-signatures - which this report can help to remove.
Key parts include:
- A summary of the formalities required for various contracts (para 2.10)
- A discussion of the evidential weight of electronic signatures (paras 2.27 – 2.32)
- A summary of the attitudes of various registries to electronic signature e.g. Companies House, IPO, HMLR (paras 2.63 – 2.71)
An ace* read for anyone who is contemplating how e-signatures can be used in their organisation.
* of base
"In fact, a combination of legislation, case law and common law principles already provides for the legal validity of electronic signatures, and they are used effectively in transactions every day, including those which are required to be signed."