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England: Law Society practice note about e-signatures for contracts

In July 2016, the Law Society released a practice note which was developed to help parties and their advisers who wish to execute commercial contracts using an electronic signature or who wish to enter into a commercial contract with others that intend to execute the contract with an electronic signature.

The practice note does not focus on any one method of electronic signature, but rather on setting out the principles for determining whether a given document signed with an electronic signature has been validly executed.

The practice note is generally limited in scope to commercial contracts (and certain other documents including deeds) signed in a business context. It does not extend to consumer contracts. It is also limited to the position under English law and not the wider UK.

It should be remembered that the practice note is the Law Society's view of good practice in this area. It is not legal advice.

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