Are the PDFs acceptable as originals if they have signatures on them?

UPDATED: Sep 17, 2014

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Sep 17, 2014Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Are the PDFs acceptable as originals if they have signatures on them?

Our office is becoming overfilled with saved paper documents, so one of the suggested solutions was to scan documents into PDF and shred the paper originals. One of our forms is one we whipped up saying that the customer understands our policies, signed at the bottom. We have one for every customer, but the suggestion is to just print out the PDF if we ever need it in the future instead of keeping each customer’s form. We don’t want to be caught with our pants down if later on legal (or whoever) decides our scanned PDFs aren’t good enough.

Asked on September 17, 2014 under Business Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Yes, PDFs can be as valid as a signed original, but ideally (to avoid any confusion or claims that by not having the original, you are trying to put one over on the other party) the contract, etc. should have as one of its terms and conditions a statement that the photocopies, facsimile transmissions, or scans of the original are all as valid as the signed original and that it is understood by all parties that if a signed original is not available in the future, it will not affect validity.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption