Have you ever secured a deal with a client over the web? Have you ever asked an employee to sign a contract online?
If so, then you’re likely wondering — are electronic signatures legal?
Is the process secure enough to trust with my business deals?
The entire globe currently faces a pandemic health crisis. That means more individuals must work from home. As a result, it’s the perfect time to identify whether your business can succeed in a remote atmosphere.
Learn everything you need to know about electronic signatures and the law below.
Electronic Signatures 101: What Laws Authorize eSignatures?
It’s no secret that the world wide web has changed the way we live our lives. From shopping online to working from home, it seems like every aspect of life has shifted. For businesses, that also includes the way contracts get validated.
In the past, most contracts were only valid with a written signature by both parties. Often, a witness needed to be present, too. That all changed in 2000.
In the middle of 2000, Congress passed the E-Sign Act. This law validates electronic records and signatures. Most states have also passed the Electronic Transactions Act. Together, these two laws opened the doors for e-commerce and electronic contracts.
What Makes an Electronic Signature Legal?
While electronic signatures are easy, there are a few things you need to do to ensure they’re legal. Here are a few rules you need to meet:
- The user must show an intent to sign (clicking a box or drawing a signature)
- The contract must state that both parties agree to do business over the internet
- Agreement must be accessible to both parties after getting signed
- The signer must maintain the right to opt-out and receive a paper copy
There are a few other things you need to consider as a business as well. What if the person who is signing online isn’t who they say they are? It’s best to ask for a few forms of authentication (like an ID or SSN) to verify the person’s identity.
Benefits of Signing Documents Online
While electronic signatures are legal, are they secure and safe? What benefits do eSignatures offer your business? Here are a few things to consider:
- Saves time
- Costs less
- No need for repetitive contracts (eSignatures are good forever)
- More secure than paper documents
Digital signatures are a win-win for businesses and customers. Without them, your company will have to rely on snail mail, which is more time consuming for all parties.
Are Electronic Signatures Legal and Secure?
Are electronic signatures legal and valid? So long as you follow the laws, they are!
Once you’re informed, you can feel more confident in signing or accepting eSignatures. Signing documents online benefits both your business and customers. So, why wait?
Are you ready to get started on moving your legal documents online? At Foxit eSign, we’re willing to offer you a 14-day free trial to test it out. Sign up for a free trial now, and start organizing your documents for 2020!