Should you get your clients to sign a simple single page proposal showing how much something will cost them? Absolutely. No car or house is sold without a mountain of paperwork ensuring everyone involved knows everything involved and has signed away their life savings, children, and futures. While not everything needs to be a hundred pages long, it is a smart idea to have your client’s sign or initial the documents to acknowledge they have received and read the document. When was the last time you checked into a hotel and did not have to initial 3 places and sign the bottom?
Don’t just take my word for it, check with your business insurance rep and see what they say about signatures. If you do not have a liability expert, check with my friend and agent Chris with Inspire Insurance Solutions .
Now that we agree you SHOULD get that signature, how do you do it? We all want to go paperless, and we never want to deal with faxing things back and forth. If you are like our company we are pretty much paperless and send everything via email or electronic fax. So how do we get the signatures AND stay paperless?
The Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN) was passed to facilitate the use of electronic records and signatures in interstate and foreign commerce by ensuring the validity and legal effect of contracts entered into electronically.
What does this mean to you? Documents signed electronically are legally binding just as documents signed with pen and ink.
So how do I get an electronic signature? While there are many methods to get the signatures, there are programs that make the process easy. A service like DocuSign not only allows you to send the documents and obtain the signatures it handles the legal side of the e-signature. I have put together a short video to show you how to use DocuSign and I hope it gets you on the right track to using electronic signatures.