E-signature Legality Guide

Check out the country-specific facts about electronic signature laws and regulations.

E-signature Legality in United States

Electronic signatures are valid in the United States, under the federal Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (“ESIGN”). State law versions of the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (“UETA”) govern e-signatures as they apply to the different states. U.S. territories also have their own e-signature laws. The same applies to Puerto Rico. Local laws may also apply.

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E-signature Legality in Canada

Several Canadian provinces allow for electronic signatures, including British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, and Quebec as of the last update of this page. At the federal level, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) governs e-signatures, and there are specific laws on e-signatures at the province level and in some cases locally.

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E-signature Legality in Australia

Electronic signatures are also valid in Australia, federally under both the Electronic Transactions Act of 1999 (Cth) (“ETA”) and the sub-regulations that are part of it, and the Electronic Transactions Regulations 2000 (Cth) (“ETR”). Australian states and territories also have their own e-signature laws, and there are some local laws as well.

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E-signature Legality in United Kingdom

Under eIDAS, there are different types of e-signatures, including “Standard” electronic signatures, “Advanced” electronic signatures, and “Qualified” electronic signatures. Each of these types of electronic signatures has its own requirements. eIDAS affects individuals, companies, public entities, and covers many different types of transactions. The good news is that e-signatures are valid for many types of documents in the U.K., provided that the laws are followed. Consult your attorney for advice.

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E-signature Legality in New Zealand

Electronic signatures are generally accepted in New Zealand, for many types of business contracts, those involving real estate, and for contracts between individuals, among other types.

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This page was last updated on October 4, 2022.

The information provided in this guide is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. While we strive to keep the information accurate and up-to-date, laws and regulations vary by jurisdiction and can change frequently. Should you have specific legal questions about any of the information on this site, you should consult with a licensed attorney in your area.