Does your jurisdiction maintain a list of trusted entities to qualify e-signatures?
There is no requirement to validate e-signatures using encryption measures; however, administrative bodies, such as the Alberta Securities Commission, can set out authentication requirements for contracts that fall under their jurisdiction. Additionally, the Government of Alberta provides recommended authentication procedures depending on the type of e-signature.
Please provide a quick overview of the law, i.e., types of contracts that qualify for use with e-signature.
The Act defines e-signatures as “electronic information a person creates or adopts in order to sign a record and that in, attached to or associated with the records.” Any document is permitted to be signed electronically, unless a document or legislation explicitly prevents it or an individual does not consent to it. Valid forms of e-signatures include a/an: scan of an original signature, “I accept” button, typed name or signature block, or signature created by a stylus/finger on a touch screen.
What is the legality of e-signatures in your jurisdiction? Are there key exceptions?
An e-signature will be valid if it can identify the signee and link them to the document to show their acceptance of and intent to be bound by the contract (1353141 Alberta Ltd v Roswell Group Inc, 2019 ABQB 559).
The Act states that electronic signatures are not applicable to wills and codicils and trusts created by them, powers of attorney, personal directives, documents that create or transfer interests in land, guarantees under the Guarantees Acknowledgement Act, and negotiable instruments.
What is the e-signature law enforceable in your jurisdiction?
“Electronic Transactions Act, SA 2001 c E-5.5 (the “Act”).
Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, SC 2000 c-5 (“PIPEDA”) (for contracts that are governed by federal legislation, such as the Bank Act).”