Snapshot: Welcome Updates To Electronic Communications Law – Finance and Banking

Marion Steward


Jersey:

Snapshot: Welcome Updates To Electronic Communications Law


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The Government of Jersey has approved further modernising
amendments to the Electronic Communications (Jersey) Law 2000 (the
EComms Law).

The amendments, which will come into force shortly following
Privy Council approval, follow directions given by the Bailiff in
the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic concerning
“remote” witnessing of signatures, and will provide
helpful statutory clarity concerning the use of electronic
signatures and video conferencing systems.

Specifically, the updated EComms Law will confirm that
signatures can be validly witnessed over an audio-visual link where
the witness either (i) positively identifies the signatory and sees
the signatory sign a document, is sent an electronic copy of that
signed document by the signatory and signs the document to attest
to the signature, or (ii) is utilising screen-sharing software to
see and sign the same document.

In each case, the audio-visual link must be maintained in order
for the remote witnessing to take place.

In a funds context, this will be particularly relevant where
subscription agreements containing powers of attorney (such as in
favour of a general partner or directors of a fund company) are
executed by individuals or other persons which are not bodies
corporate.

The amendments will also confirm that a signatory may authorise
another person to attach the signatory’s electronic signature
on their behalf, and that no signature, seal, attestation or
notarisation will be deemed invalid by reason of it being in
electronic form.

The adoption of digital technologies and remote working
behaviours may have been accelerated by the global pandemic, but
these are undoubtedly here to stay. As such, the modernised
framework of the amended EComms Law is most welcome.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.

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