A signature —also called an autograph, is a vital part of any legal agreement. This is because it shows that the party has consented to be held to the terms of the document.
If you’ve made some financial transactions, then you’ve probably had to pen down your signature at some point.
However, with the advent of cross-border agreements and online transactions, distance has made the traditional methods of signature signing difficult. Businesses have had to come up with alternative measures for getting these documents signed remotely. One of those is the e-signature.
E-Signatures are signatures in an electronic medium, just as the name suggests. They enable users to sign documents online without going through the hassle of procuring physical media. These render the location of the parties involved in the agreement unimportant, bringing more ease into their processes.
The extra cost that would have been expended via postage, printing, or transportation to get the document or the parties to a central location is also saved. These benefits make e-signatures important for any parties that need to make agreements across far distances.
The best part about these tools is that they are legally binding and can be enforced in almost every country in the world.
You may hear an e-signature be referred to as a digital signature, but you should know that those two concepts are quite different. We’ll tell you how.
E-Signature vs. Digital Signature
E-Signatures and digital signatures are alike in many respects, but the slight difference makes each of them better suited to certain circumstances.
An E-Signature can be any signature signed remotely. It is just a symbol attached to the document to indicate legal acceptance. A digital signature goes a bit further.
In general terms, a digital signature is an E-Signature. However, it also incorporates certain additional measures to safeguard the authenticity of the appended signature. This tool uses public key technology that comes with encryption capabilities.
A digital signature imbues the document with certain encrypted data that verifies the authenticity and keeps the document traceable. These steps are necessary to prevent signature falsification.
An E-Signature can be used when compliance and security are lax, but a digital Signature is necessary for more strict agreements. Insurance forms, tax documents, healthcare, and legal forms would all require stringent security in the form of digital signatures.
Methods Of Creating An E-Signature
For your personal use or your small business, a standard e-signature would accomplish all you need it to. This is why you would need to create one for yourself. If you’re wondering how to go about that, we’ve got you covered.
We’ll show you the different ways to get your e-signature set up.
1. Method 1: Print and Scan
This is the method employed by most users. In this method, the document is sent to the signatory in an electronic format, like a docx file or a PDF.
The signatory then prints out the document onto a hardcopy medium, and pens down their signature. Once that is done, they would scan the signed document, and send it to the other party.
This method, while being the easiest to understand, isn’t ideal for a lot of reasons.
- It is not cost-effective as paper is used to print the document.
- It is a lot more stressful than the other options.
- It isn’t eco-friendly, as every used paper increases your carbon footprint.
2. Method 2: Sign and Scan
Another option is this sign and scan method. Here, the signatory signs on a blank page and scans the signature from that page onto the document. This is then sent to the other party.
This is a variation of the first method, however, most of the issues are still the same. Costly paper is used, the hassle of printing isn’t eliminated, and it isn’t a green alternative.
3. Method 3: Digital Writing
This is the most advanced method of creating an E-Signature. This incorporates state-of-the-art technology like touchscreens or stylus pens to sign documents. It is just like a wet signature, but the pens and paper are replaced with fingers and screens.
With this method, signatures can be appended to documents in their soft copy form. This eliminates the necessity for a printer and a scanner. It is also very cost-effective, as paper usage is avoided, and time is not wasted.
Digital writing also serves to reduce the user’s carbon footprint, making it a viable option for sustainability.
While the pros of this method are many, its efficiency can be enhanced with an online pdf converter like LuminPDF.
How Lumin PDF can Help
A tool like LuminPDF can change the way you and your business carry out remote document signing. This is a multipurpose pdf editor online free tool that enables you to handle anything concerning your soft documents.
This includes basic activities like converting from pdf to word free, and advanced processes like OCR scanning and E-Signature creation. This is also a word to pdf converter online tool that can also convert pdf to word free.
This online pdf merger tool and pdf to doc converter has very advanced E-Signature capabilities. LuminPDF incorporates these three methods above to give you the best experience when creating and using an E-Signature. Here’s how it works:
- Upload your file: After signing up, upload the file you wish to sign to LuminPDF. This can be done by dragging and dropping the document from your desktop.
- Create Your E-Signature: Open the file and head to the toolbar. Click on the E-Signature tool, and select the “Add Signature” box. At this step, you could either draw your signature (using digital writing) or upload a picture of your signature from a blank page.
- Begin Signing: This new e-signature you’ve uploaded can be put into your document and resized to fit the space. LuminPDF then saves the signature for future use, ensuring that you don’t have to go through all this stress again. This saves cost, time, and stress.
E-Signatures are essential for the well-being of every business. However, incorporating this doc to pdf converter into your agreements would have a positive impact on your productivity.
With the tools available on LuminPDF, you can count on your documents being signed within the shortest possible time possible. Good luck!