Electronic Signatures

Two cases, one fairly recent, that address the issue of whether a name within an email might constitute a signature for the purposes of forming an enforceable contract: Mehta v J Pereira Fernandes SA [2006] EWHC 813 (Ch) and SM Integrated Transware v Schenker Singapore, [2005] SGHC 58.

The Singaporean case is found on LawNet, to which I don’t have a subscription.

The English court said that the sender’s automatically inserted email address did not constitute a signature, not being intended as one, but “if a party or a party’s agent sending an e mail types his or her or his or her principal’s name to the extent required or permitted by existing case law in the body of an e mail, then in my view that would be a sufficient signature for the purposes of Section 4 [of the Statute of Frauds].” I wonder if a signature automatically inserted by a mail program would suffice?

Both of these cases came to my attention on the ULC-ECOMM-L list managed by John Gregory.

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