E-Signature Regulations
Japan

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Does your jurisdiction maintain a list of trusted entities to qualify e-signatures?

There are nine certification services that have been accredited by the Japanese government. However, accreditation merely indicates that a certification service meets certain standards, and it is possible to provide services without accreditation. Since there is no difference in the legal effect of e-signatures certified by services without accreditation, many businesses provide services without accreditation.
Foreign businesses can also be accredited by the Japanese government.

Please provide a quick overview of the law, i.e., types of contracts that qualify for use with e-signature.

Under Japanese law, most contracts can be executed with e-signatures.
However, there are exceptions to this rule. For example, contracts that require the creation of a notarized document (e.g., guarantee contracts for loans and other debts incurred for business) cannot be executed with an e-signature.

E-signatures may also be used for corporate minutes and other documents. However, in the case of registration, the e-signatures that can be used are limited.

What is the legality of e-signatures in your jurisdiction? Are there key exceptions?

Contracts executed with an e-signature have the same effect as those executed in writing.

They can also be used as evidence in court.

What is the e-signature law enforceable in your jurisdiction?

  • The main laws regarding e-signature are as follows:
  • Act on Electronic Signatures and Certification Business
  • Act on Dissemination and Promotion of Electronic Power of Attorney
    Commercial Registration Act
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