Remote working – signing legal documents using e-signatures

In these uncertain times, trade finance and other transaction parties may face particular logistical challenges when signing documents in person. One option available to the transaction parties is to sign documents “virtually” in other words, signing a hard copy of a document and sending a scan of the signature page to the other side. This method of signing will be familiar to most people who have entered into transactional documents with an international counterparty. Parties are also increasingly turning to the possibility of utilising electronic platforms for signing documents, called “e-signing” or “electronic signing”. But can electronic signing be a valid form of signing an agreement? We look in detail at the options available to those signing agreements under English law. As a matter of English law, you can rely on an electronic version of a document that has been created under a virtual signing provided that the appropriate Mercury instructions have been followed and the individuals who sign are duly authorised to do so. The Note covers the process of each party signing counterparts of the agreement, whereby a signatory prints and signs the signature page there is no need to print off the full document then returns in a single email to their lawyers or the law firm coordinating the signing to which is attached the final version of the document. A final version of the document, together with copies of the executed signature pages, may then be circulated to all parties.

Practice guide 8: execution of deeds

When you agree to buy something now and pay for it later or take out a loan, you enter into a contract. It is between you and the person or organisation that you bought or borrowed from. Not all agreements form legally binding contracts.

English law lays down few formalities for the form of a contract and Delivery fixes the date from which the executing party is bound by the.

This article tells you how to create a deed and when you should use one. It also tells you the advantages of using a deed over an agreement. What are the advantages of a deed? Why use one rather than an agreement. The law at its most basic is that if you put your name to a document you are bound by it. Today you can also be bound by an electronic signature provided it is clear that you intended to be bound.

Lawyers like certainty and safety, so they often use a deed because it costs nothing to do so, avoids the slightest risk, and adds an aura of “legal mystery”. Deeds are often used unnecessarily. This article explores the real differences between the two and explains when to use a deed. In any UK jurisdiction, a document need only be “Signed as a deed and delivered” to be a deed. Signing as a deed requires those very words and the signature of the person “making” the deed.

The signature should be on the document itself approximately in the space provided. The words of execution should name the signatory or otherwise make clear who has signed the document. For obvious reasons, the signature ought to be in ink or some other indelible medium.

Signing documents in counterpart: what is required?

He was acquitted in Further information on this story appears in a Los Angeles Times news report here. IP Draughts is unfamiliar with the French law on backdating documents, but can provide some insight into English law in this area. Section 1 of the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act provides:. Accordingly, mis-dating a contract could amount to an offence under this Act.

While a contract does not have to be dated in order to be valid and enforceable, it is a good idea to do so. Also, it is legal in Michigan to predate a contract. a contract then by whipping it out and displaying their signature on the document.

Signing in counterpart means that duplicate contracts or deeds are printed so that there is a separate copy for signing by each party. The opposite situation is where one copy of the contract or deed is printed and signed by all parties to it. If you have numerous parties all in different locations it is a useful tool to allow completion without having to circulate a single copy of a document to all parties to sign.

Often, you will see a clause in the agreement permitting the signatories to sign it in counterpart. In short, contracts and deeds can usually be signed in counterpart. The absence of a specific counterpart clause should not affect the validity of a deed where a deed has been executed in counterpart. However, having such a clause can help to prevent another party from claiming that an agreement is not binding. They could claim that they did not know, due to the lack of a counterpart clause, that they were entering into a binding contract by signing an agreement not signed by the other parties.

There is no clear agreement on this point. Most lawyers will therefore err on the side of caution and say that when two directors or another combination of two authorised signatories are signing a document on behalf of a company they must sign the same copy of that document.

Backdating contracts and other documents and instruments

Whilst it might be tempting at times, backdating a document is never the answer! As business owners ourselves, we have a pragmatic in-house approach to resolving issues before they arise by working alongside our clients, as part of their team. We are commercial, practical and entrepreneurial in our approach to legal services. Our solicitors have long represented companies and individuals in their legal challenges and disputes. Highly qualified, dedicated and each a specialist in their field of expertise.

Our values place commercial decisions at the fore.

IP Draughts is unfamiliar with the French law on backdating documents, but can provide some insight into English law in this area. Section 1 of.

Signatures prove your identity and show your authorization of a contract. Your signature is your official stamp—your seal of approval. A signature identifies the individual who created it. Unless legally expressed, a signature can use loops, ascenders, descenders, special characters. Most contracts do not become legally binding until they have the signatures of every party involved. By signing a document, you confirm your intention of executing the terms in the contract.

A signatory is a person or sometimes an organization , who signs an agreement or contract. If an organization is a signatory, a representative signs their name on behalf of the organization. Signatories must be the age of majority and involved in the execution of a document. For instance, if you and your partner create and sign a Prenuptial Agreement , you are both signatories.

FAQs: signing Scots law documents in cross-border finance transactions

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It is intended that the MALNA will primarily be used in English law governed a template document and is intended as a framework for efficient negotiations, as the executed Effective Time Acknowledgment on the date of Delivery. A party.

In order to understand a medieval document, researchers need to know what it is, and why it was created. Catalogue descriptions created by archivists or curators will give you some information about the document. However, many documents have not been described in detail so you may have to do your own detective work. Deeds and other formal documents used stock phrases and formulas to convey legitimacy.

They also used authentication devices to persuade people that they were genuine, and could be relied upon as evidence. Historians study the form and content of documents to determine whether they were written according to the conventions of the time they are said to come from. Some documents have been discovered to be later forgeries by using this method.

Seals were the only form of personal authentication in the Middle Ages. Deeds were not usually signed until the sixteenth century. The earliest example known in our collections is Mi D dated , signed by John Byngham. Some medieval signatures exist in private letters, but many letters were written by scribes from dictation so the name at the end of the document may not actually have been written by its owner.

A seal is an impression made by pressing a wood or metal matrix into warm wax. The pattern on the matrix is transferred to the wax. Seals come in various shapes and sizes, and there are a number of ways of attaching seals to documents.

When is Backdating OK?

It seems simple, but which date to write on a contract, and how to interpret the dates often raises some fiddly. There are a number of dates which can appear within contracts. These generally include:. The contract date is usually written onto the front cover and the first page of the contract although there is no legal requirement to do so.

In my humble translator’s opinion, no matter which kind of English we use in For instance, it is curious to know that the translation of legal document may satisfy for then accrued liabilities under the Agreement as of said termination date. 4.

Please contact customerservices lexology. I am sure that from time to time we have all come across the vexed question of backdating documents. Is it legal to comply with the request or must it always be refused outright? Alternatively, is there a way of legally trying to achieve the required objective? For example, if a seller had sold his house in December then the seller could have taken advantage of certain tax benefits.

However, he only realizes this in January and so wishes to backdate the document to December. The event did not happen during the time period required for the benefit so an attempt is being made to pretend that it did. This is a fraud on the tax authorities, a criminal offence and is likely to get the lawyer who prepared the document disciplined by his regulator and possibly also charged as a co-conspirator. For obvious reasons, any request to backdate a document for these reasons should be flatly turned down.

However, an explanation often given by the person wanting to backdate the document is that the document is merely meant to reflect an oral agreement that has already been made and that this is just a way of documenting it. In theory, this would appear on the face of it to be a reasonable request, as it is just a private arrangement between two parties.

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