Q & A – What is the E-Sign Act and what implications does it have for HR?

Q. What is the E-Sign Act and what implications does it have for HR?

A. The Digital Signature Act of July 1999, often called the “E-Sign Act,” was originally written for commerce, not HR, so it does not specifically reference HR issues. The Act allows electronic signatures to hold equal footing with handwritten signatures as legally binding on documents for e-commerce transactions. The Act does not state what an electronic signature looks like or what technology must be used to create the signature.

The E-Sign Act allows electronic signatures to be used in most HR transactions. It allows personnel records to be retained, transmitted, and stored electronically with the same restrictions as paper records.