UK court rules email signature to be legally binding

Email signature is legal in the UK

In a landmark judgement relating to a property transaction, a Manchester court has determined that an email carrying an automatically-generated signature block indicates that the sender has agreed formally to the terms described in the message.

As published in The Register today, if the exchange of emails between two parties indicates that agreement has been reached, this is deemed to be legally binding. In the case referred to above, this had a dramatic impact on the value of the transaction.

Signing documents electronically can introduce significant efficiencies to the process of securing agreement to the terms of a contract. It is important, however, for all parties to be fully aware of the consequences of their actions. In recognition of this, the electronic signature facility introduced by Safe4 earlier in 2019 requires the signing party to add their password at the time of signing, and generates a record of the signature by means of an additional page appended to a PDF file containing a summary of the parties’ agreement to the content of the document. It also generates a unique and immutable verification code using a blockchain-like string.

In the United Kingdom this method of signing a document is acceptable to both Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, and Companies House.

For more information on how facilities of this sort can assist your business, please contact us.

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