In this article, we will provide a summarized overview of signatures and general insight into digital signatures, which you can use to sign contracts in Contractbook.
When are digital signatures binding?
Individual signs a document to signify acceptance, an obligation, certification of knowledge, or approval.
When signing a document, the signature authenticates in writing that the individual accepts/validates the contents of the document.
What is a digital signature, and why should you use it?
You can find more information about that in our blog section here.
How can I make sure a digitally signed document is valid?
- You can always validate a digital signature manually after downloading any of your signed through Contractbook contracts as a PDF.
- Simply open the document in Adobe and go to the signature panel.
- Click here for more information about that type of verification.
What regulation applies to digital signatures?
In the European Union, we have a Regulation shortly called eIDAS: Regulation on Electronic Identification and Trust Services for Electronic Transactions in the Internal Market.
Any idea what eIDAS is?
- Here is a link to our blog section, which will help you understand that better.
- The Regulation came into effect in 2016 and aimed to ensure adequate security for different electronic identification and trust services mechanisms. It is directly applicable to all EU countries.
- eIDAS has also been implemented in non-EU countries such as the EEA EFTA States: Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein.
- Many countries across the world also accept digital signatures.
- See what countries accept digital signatures here.
Why are digital signatures binding?
According to the eIDAS:
- “Digital signatures shall not be denied legal effect or admissibility as evidence in legal proceedings solely because it is in an electronic form or does not meet the requirements for Qualified Electronic Signatures.”
- This means that no one can deny the legal effect of a digital signature because it is in electronic form.
- “A Qualified Electronic Signature shall have the equivalent legal effect of a handwritten signature.”
Therefore, in cases where a handwritten signature is required, a Qualified Electronic Signature is sufficient, but an Advanced Electronic Signature would not be enough.
Therefore, a digital signature in EU countries can be allowed its legal effect even if they are digital. Read more about this in our blog.
You can click here to find which Signature Types are supported in Contractbook.