E-signatures have been proving considerably efficient over the years in almost every sector. One such sector to have availed the benefits of E-signatures are the law firms. An e-signature or electronic signature is a legally acceptable way of getting approval on a digital document. These signatures are secure and have replaced handwritten signatures in almost all the sectors.. E-signatures, if practiced under all the existing laws and orders, hold the same importance and value as physical signatures. These signatures are an easy method of verification through which lawyers can serve their clients easily, manage all the work remotely without the burden of managing pen and paper. E-signatures are the new and secure way of verifying documents.
E-signatures are not a new phenomenon and have been legal for multiple years now. E-signatures were granted the same legal status as handwritten signatures through the Information Technology Act (IT Act). Law firms, that otherwise require massive amounts of document work and maintenance of huge files, can transfer all these documents on the digital platform and can facilitate the benefits of e- signature. E-signatures also allow the lawyers to get easy approval of documents from their superiors or from their clients in a legally binding way.
There are a lot of advantages of e-signatures entering into the world of law firms. Let’s talk about a few of them:
- Legally binding and acceptable by the court: The main reason for e-signatures to hold importance in the law firms is that they are legally binding and hold the same value and importance as physical signatures. There are multiple levels of verification that need to be cleared for a person to be eligible for e-signatures and that is what makes it authentic and hence, acceptable by the court. If an E-signature is made within all the guidelines and laws that are laid for attesting its authenticity, it is legally binding and accepted in all forms of jurisdiction for almost all kinds of agreements. As convenient as work with E-signatures is, their legal acceptance makes them all the more favourable.
- Saves time and increases overall productivity: Digital documentation facilitates the transfer of all the manual data to a software on the digital platforms. This in turn saves a lot of time for the lawyers who otherwise have to go through multiple files and documents on a daily basis and have to invest a lot of time into looking for their desired document from the collection of thousands of such documents. When all these documents are securely available on one software, it becomes easier to surf through them to find your desired document. This saves a lot of time.Transferring or sharing of files is also done just through a click. Approval of documents thatdocuments, that are needed by the lawyers from their clients or counterparts is also made easier through E-signatures. All these facilities increase the productivity and efficiency of the lawyers to a great extent and the reduced workload also provides work satisfaction to them and increases their efficiency.
- Ensure safety and reduce risks : When all the documents and the data that they store, is available only on a single software and that software has only exclusive or limited access through user identity authentication only, the security and safety of data increases tenfold times. With such high level security, it becomes almost impossible for infiltrators to enter into the system and hamper with the data stored. The risk of data loss or data mismanagement is also reduced because everything is stored and saved on the web. It becomes easy for the lawyers to create new files, delete old ones, get access to previous records aur get approvals on various documents and the overall efficiency of the law firm also increases.
- Convenient and cost-efficient: As already said that the entry of e-signatures have reduced the workload of the lawyers in the law firms to a large extent. These are not only convenient for the lawyers but also for the clients and make the whole flow of work much simpler than it was before the use of E-signatures. In case a lawyer is working with the client, he or she need not be necessarily physically present for every meeting or for signing or approval of every document. The lawyer can simply share the soft copy of the document to the client from his workplace and the client can e-sign the document from his workplace and the work is done. This also saves a lot of time and money for both the parties. The cost of the law firm, in specific, is reduced to a large extent because of the elimination of the cost involved in the purchase of pen, paper, files, stationery, printers, storage place, etc. Therefore, e-signatures are not only convenient but also extremely cost-efficient.
With the entry of e-signatures into the law firms, the lawyers have benefitted to a large extent and their workload has reduced tremendously. If followed within all the laws, e-signature will only prove to be more helpful over the coming years.