Goods and services sold in New York State through the Internet or other e-commerce venues that use signatures to validate the terms of a contract are bound by the Electronics Signatures and Records Act (ESRA). The ESRA provides that signatures received electronically will be legally binding and considered equivalent to hand-written signatures in New York State. Electronically-signed documents and receipts have the same force as ones signed on paper.
The ESRA provides that "signatures" made via electronic means will be legally binding, just as hand-written signatures are. The law also enhances and clarifies the authority of government to create and retain records in computer produced electronic form. As a result of the ESRA, electronic records have the same legal force as those produced on other formats, such as paper and microfilm.
Under the law, New York State Office of Information Technology Services (ITS) acts as the Electronic Facilitator responsible for promulgating rules and regulations for programs authorized by the bill. As the Electronic Facilitator, ITS assists private and public sector parties in understanding and using the ESRA to support and encourage electronic commerce and electronic government in New York State.
For more detailed information on the ESRA, including recommended practices for accepting electronic signatures and maintaining electronic transaction records, contact the ITS using the contact information provided here.
NYS Office of Information Technology Services (ITS)
Empire State Plaza
P.O. Box 2062
New York, NY 12220
Goods and services sold in New York State through the Internet or other e-commerce venues that use signatures to validate the terms of a contract are bound by the Electronics Signatures and Reco