Law Commission consultation on the electronic execution of documents

Closed 23 Nov 2018

Opened 21 Aug 2018


This is a public consultation by the Law Commission for England and Wales.

The law relating to signatures and other formal documentary requirements has a history spanning centuries. As far back as 1677, the Statute of Frauds required certain documents to be in writing and signed. It is still in force today. But the documents executed in today’s world are no longer the same as those used over 400 years ago. Individuals, consumers and businesses demand modern, convenient methods for making binding transactions. Technological developments have changed the ways in which these transactions are made and will continue to change at an ever-more-rapid pace.

We have been told that issues around the electronic execution of documents are hindering the use of new technology where legislation requires a document to be "signed". The purpose of this project is to ensure that the law governing the electronic execution of documents, including electronic signatures, is sufficiently certain and flexible to remain fit for purpose in a global, digital, environment.

For more information about this project, click here.

We recommend that consultees read the consultation paper before responding to the consultation. A shorter summary is also available. Consultees do not need to answer all the questions if they are only interested in some aspects of the consultation.

About the Law Commission: The Law Commission is a statutory body, created by the Law Commissions Act 1965 (“the 1965 Act”) for the purpose of promoting the reform of the law. It is an advisory Non Departmental Public Body sponsored by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). The Law Commission is independent of Government. For more information about the Law Commission please click here.

Responses to this consultation: We may publish or disclose information you provide us in response to this consultation, including personal information. For more information on how we consult and how we may use responses to the consultation, please see page ii of the consultation paper. For information about how we handle your personal data, please see our privacy notice.


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