Buying and selling property could be speeded up with the use of electronic signatures.
The Law Commission has confirmed that electronic signatures on contracts are as valid as a handwritten signature.
That means conveyancing solicitors could use digital technology to make the process of buying and selling property more efficient and potentially faster for those involved in the transaction.
Confidence in technology
A report from the Law Commission aims to dispel any myths that digital marks are not legally valid so both legal personnel and their clients can be confident in using electronic signatures to complete a property sale or purchase.
Stephen Lewis, the Commercial and Common Law Commissioner, said: "Electronic signatures can offer quicker and easier transactions for businesses and consumers.
"Our report aims to provide an accessible statement of the law that makes it clear that an electronic signature can generally be used in place of a handwritten signature as long as the usual rules on signatures are met."
Help in certain situations
Essentially, so long as the signature is witnessed in a way that satisfies the law, a buyer or seller could sign the sale contract for a property digitally, which would help in situations where one is abroad.
According to the Law Commission, which covers England and Wales, common law is flexible on different types of signature, including an X for those who cannot read or write and electronic forms such as a name on an email or a tick on an "I accept" box on a website.
High-quality conveyancing services
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