Legal Considerations To Adopt E-Signatures
With businesses continuing to operate remotely, contracts are often endorsed digitally with the use of e-signatures. SGTech, SBF partnered with Bird & Bird ATMD to shed light on common legal pitfalls concerning the use of e-signatures and provide practical steps to protect your business.
Ms Tai Yuet Ping of Bird & Bird ATMD defined what electronic signatures are, the circumstances where they would be legally valid, as well as provided a checklist to help businesses ascertain when it is a proper use of e-signatures.
Ms Tai shared that e-signatures are generally valid in Singapore as long as the documents being signed are not among the list of excluded matters under the Electronic Transactions Act. These e-signatures also need to satisfy the following conditions:
- The e-signature can identify the person
- it indicates the person’s intentions, and
- is reliable.
She also shared examples of documents that commonly make use of e-signatures.
Ms Tai shared a practical checklist to guide businesses in deciding if e-signatures are appropriate for use.
Authenticating an e-signature
Cautioning that fraud and cybersecurity threats are real, Ms Tai highlighted that it would be worthwhile to take additional steps to ensure the authenticity of the e-signature, especially if the contract is high-risk or high-value. Some precautionary measures companies could implement are arranging an e-meeting with the signatory, or calling up the company to verify if it is aware of ongoing negotiations. She also provided other tips for businesses to secure e-signatures.
You may also wish to download the presentation slides here:
Presentation Slides by Bird & Bird ATMD LLP.
More to come