Practical Law Glossary Item 3-578-4607 (Approx. 3 pages)
Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA)
An act published by the Uniform Law Commission in 1999 giving electronic signatures and records (including contracts) the same legal effect as traditional handwritten signatures and paper documents under the statute of frauds. The UETA only applies in certain types of transactions and only when the parties have agreed to conduct the transaction electronically.
An electronic signature can be any electronic sound, symbol, or process that is both:
Attached to or associated with a record or contract.
Executed or adopted with the intent to sign the record.
An electronic record can be any information that is created, used, or stored in a medium other than paper.
The UETA has been adopted in 49 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands. New York has not adopted the UETA but has adopted similar laws making electronic signatures legally enforceable.
For a discussion of the use of electronic signatures in real estate documents, see: