Electronic signatures in the legal sector

May 03, 2017

Do you know the true value of your signature when you apply it? And what are the costs that surround this everyday process?

The legal industry relies heavily on vast amounts of documentation, throughout the entire lifecycle of any matter. From initial client engagement, to close of case. Throughout these processes, signature application features often and in many cases in duplication. The legal industry is heavily investing in electronic signature adoption. We take a look into the value of e-signatures in the legal sector, and the benefits surrounding them.

Turnaround Time: Old vs New

Diagram of tranditional vs digital document process

A study carried out within a large legal firm, discovered that by implementing electronic signatures within case management processes, the turnaround time of document transactions could be reduced by up to 80%. A report carried out by AIIM in 2013 found that as well as a rapid reduction in turnaround time, 44% of users that they surveyed saw a reduction in process disruption that existed as a result of interruption of process in order to collect a physical signature.

Data collected from within E-Sign shows that in most cases clients can achieve e-signature capture of documents within 48 hours:

Bar chart of average E-Sign signature turnaround time

Security and protection of legal documents

The use of e-signatures gives the legal sector enhanced audit controls over documents as well as improved security and integrity. This is established through the make-up of the digital document, where any changes made to the document once signed, instantly invalidates the document, and changes are flagged to the original author. E-Sign also goes a step further with its enhanced signature validation… If an e-signature is copied and applied to a fraudulent document, the signature redirects those viewing the false document, back to the original in which the signature was applied, therefore giving reassurance to the user that document integrity is always maintained.

Signature Example

In 2014 a survey was carried out solely in the legal sector (202 respondents). It discovered that 87% of those questioned, highlighted that security and integrity of sensitive data, as the most important factor in implementing electronic signature solutions. E-Sign provides secure encrypted, UK based storage solutions for all client documents.

Financial savings

A study of a large law firm, was carried out in 2016, after it had been using e-signatures for a year. The study discovered discovered that the law firm made a total saving for the year of over £284,000.

By generating and storing the documents within E-Sign electronically, the law firm saved using over 1.4 million pieces of paper over a 12-month period. The savings are presented below:

Legal paper savings table

The cost benefits for this new trend in procurement is pretty evident, but it’s not just cost saving and limiting capital expenditure. Electronic signature implementation dramatically improves customer experience, and deal close rates.

For further information on the savings your business could make, download the report of the savings report by clicking here

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