Electronic signature, although it has been operating in Poland for 18 years, is still treated as a novelty. And as it goes with all novelties, it has its eager supporters and fierce opponents. People who are reluctant to use it are often misled by misconceptions and wrong opinions. While running talks with many business representatives, we have noticed that - regardless of the industry or the size of a given company - most concerns relate to the same aspects. Therefore, we have gathered top 6 concerns related to e-signature and its use in business. Below you will find our answers, which will dispel all of them.
1. "My contractors will not wish to sign contracts online" 2. "A document when signed electronically is not in fact a document" 3. "Some contracts must be signed by hand" 4. "How do I know that a given document has been signed by the competent person?" 5. "But what documents can I actually send and sign?" 6. "I have just a few documents to sign in my company"
1. "My contractors will not wish to sign contracts online'
You can be an eager supporter of innovation and electronic signature. But what if your contractors do not wish to sign documents electronically? According to our data, 99.5% of documents is accepted by signers. This form of signature is much appreciated by customers. Thousands of documents are signed this way every month. The following appeals to our customers:
• compliance with the law and its requirements • security of concluded contracts • speed of signing documents • convenience of use • no costs to be incurred by signers More on the individual benefits can be found at the link (top 5 relevant benefits of the Autenti e-signature for signers).
2. "A document when signed electronically is not in fact a document
The Polish and European law has been trying to keep up with technological changes. A number of new concepts and definitions have been introduced over the last few years, which make it much easier to do business. These changes refer to, among others, the issue of a document itself or the concept of a document form. The so-called eIDAS (i.e. Regulation (EU) No 910/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 July 2014 on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market) is one of the chief legal acts applicable to electronic documents and electronic signature. eIDAS specifies that:
• electronic signature - data in an electronic form attached to or logically associated with other data in an electronic form and used by a given signer as his/her signature,
• electronic document - any content stored in an electronic form, in particular: text or audio, visual or audio-visual recording
• "Neither the legal effect of an electronic document nor its admissibility is questioned as evidence in legal proceedings solely on the grounds that it is made in an electronic form. In other words, an e-mail with the name and surname of its sender used as a signature in the message footer is also an electronically signed document. Whether a given document is valid and binding does not depend on its form (an electronic form) but on its content or signature used because some statements of intent require appropriate form (e.g. a written form).
3. "Some contracts must be signed by hand"
That's true. Some documents need to be made in writing. The Autenti platform enables the application of many types of electronic signatures. Both standard and qualified electronic signatures. The vast majority of documents in companies can be signed with a standard electronic signature, while for example an contract of employment or a contract for a specific work with the transfer of copyrights must be signed in writing. What is important, in order to fulfil the requirement of keeping a written form, it is sufficient to use a qualified electronic signature in the Autenti platform, which is equivalent to a written signature. You can find more on the forms of legal operations at this entry.
4. "How do I know that a given document has been signed by the competent person?
For the safety and effectiveness of the document electronic signing process, it is critical that documents are signed by the right person(s). The identity of signers is verified by means of:
• e-mail address - a contract to be signed is sent to the specific e-mail address indicated by its sender
• SMS code - a sender of a given contract specifies its recipient's telephone number to which a one-off SMS code is sent, which must be entered by the signer prior its signature is made (analogously to the confirmation of an electronic banking transfer)
• logging into electronic banking - a signer must log in to his/her bank account in order to confirm his/her identity prior to placing the signature
• video verification - a video call during which a consultant confirms the identity of any person interviewed
5. "But what documents can I actually send and sign"?
We estimate that about 90% of documents in trade between companies can be signed via the Autenti platform now. Most often, our customers use it to send and sign:
• contracts for a specific work, • commission contracts, • management contracts, • record cards, • reception and acceptance protocols, • financial forecasts, • purchase contracts, • investment contracts, • sales contracts, • contracts with customers, • NDAs with contractors, • orders, • briefs.
At the link you will also find our detailed analysis of the HR area with information on which documents you can sign using the Autenti system.
6. "I have just a few documents to sign in my company"
The Autenti platform pays off even with a small number of documents sent and signed. The cost of Autenti e-signature for companies starts from PLN 20 per month per 1 user. For this amount by post you can send 2 registered letters with an acknowledgement of receipt but in the Autenti system you can send any number of documents. Find out more about our packages.