eSignature Legality SummaryeSignatures are legally valid and admissible in the court of law. Singapore follows a hierarchical root of trust model where eSignatures or digital signatures issued by a Certifying Authority are considered legally valid. Specific use cases for eSignatures are indicated in the ET Act.
Singapore law highlights that a handwritten signature isn’t always needed for a contract to be considered credible, and that contracts can’t be refused for simply being electronic. They’ll usually be seen as such as long as legally able individuals have reached an agreement. This can be by verbally agreeing, electronically or physically signing something. The Electronic Transactions Act 2010 states that electronic contracts can’t be dismissed for being electronic, however, they may need additional evidence to support these types of documents in court.
*The information on this site is "AS IS" and for general information purposes only.
Use Cases for eSignatures ?
Use cases where an SES is typically appropriate include:
- Speedy HR document preparation with preapproved templates, easy update of each employee, new employee onboarding processes as well as 360 degree view of employee files.
- End user agreements including sales & service terms, new retail account opening documents, invoices, shipment details, user manual, EULAs, policies
- HR documents such as Employment Contracts, benefits paperwork and other new employee onboarding processes, but not termination notices
Use Cases for Qualified Signatures ?
Use cases where an AES is typically appropriate include:
- Purchase, procurement and commercial agreements including invoices, trade and payment terms, certificates, NDAs, sales & distribution agreements, order acknowledgements.
- Commercial agreements between corporate entities including NDAs, procurement documents, sales agreements
Use Cases that are not appropriate for Electronic Signatures
Use cases that are specifically barred from digital or electronic processes or that include explicit requirements, such as handwritten (e.g. wet ink) signatures or formal notarial process that are not usually compatible with electronic signatures or digital transaction management.
- Handwritten - any contract for the sale or other disposition of immovable property (except implied, constructive and resulting trusts), or any interest in such property or the conveyance of immovable property or the transfer of any interest in immovable property
- Intellectual property licenses including technology licensing, copyright licensing, trademark licensing and franchising agreement
- Handwritten - wills
- Handwritten - negotiable instruments
- Handwritten - documents of title
- Handwritten - bills of exchange
- Handwritten - promissory notes
- Handwritten - consignment notes
- Handwritten - bills of lading
- Handwritten - warehouse receipts or any transferable document or instrument that entitles the bearer or beneficiary to claim the delivery of goods or the payment of a sum of money
- Handwritten - the creation, performance or enforcement of an indenture
- Handwritten - declaration of trust or power of attorney
List of Local Trust Service Providers
|Institute||Regulatory Body/CA/DSC Providers||Supported by emSigner||Website|
|Infocomm Media Development Authority||Controller of Certification Authorities||Yes||https://www.imda.gov.sg|
|Netrust Pte Ltd||CA||Yes||https://www.netrust.net/|
“Digital Signature” means a transformation of a message using an asymmetric cryptosystem such that a person having the initial message and the signer’s public key can accurately determine
(a) whether the transformation was created using the private key that corresponds to the signer’s public key;
(b) whether the message has been altered since the transformation was made
 An AES is an “advanced electronic signature”, a type of electronic signature that meets the following requirements:
(a) it is uniquely linked to the signatory;
(b) it is capable of identifying the signatory;
(c) it is created using means that are under the signatory’s sole control;
(d) it is linked to other electronic data in such a way that any alteration to the said data can be detected.
 A QES is a specific digital signature implementation that has met the particular specifications of a government, including using a secure signature creation device, and been certified as ‘qualified’ by either that government or a party contracted by that government.
External ResourcesElectronic Transactions Act (2010) https://sso.agc.gov.sg/Act/ETA2010
eMudhra, and all associates including agents, officers, employees or affiliates, are not liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special, exemplary or consequential damages.