Digital Document Signing: The Landscape is Changing

Acis, current as of: 1 November 2021.

While there’s often uncertainty around digital document signing, we confidently recommend our clients use it for pre-registration company documents. We expect acceptance of digital document signing to grow over time, but this is a good start.

Executing pre-company registration documents

When completing an order to register a company with Acis, you’re now able to execute pre-company registration documents, including consents and applications for shares, using digital signatures through our partnership with FuseSign.

The legal requirements 

The Corporations Act requires that directors and secretaries of a proposed company consent to hold those positions, in writing, prior to the company’s registration. Likewise, proposed members (shareholders) of the company are required to consent to being members prior to the company’s registration. Holding these written consents is an essential step in ensuring that the Corporations Act is complied with when registering a company.

In the event that someone claims they did not consent to be a director, secretary or member of a company, it is not uncommon for ASIC to contact the party who caused the company to be registered, querying the existence of the written consents.

We’ll continue to monitor the market

While the digital document signing landscape continues to evolve at both a federal and state/territory level in Australia, the reality is that there is often misalignment between the position at law and the practical and policy positions of those who transact with our documents (banks, revenue offices etc).

This is why Acis is currently undertaking extensive market research in this space, engaging with not only our national panel of specialists, but also various other stakeholders. The goal is simple: ensuring Acis clients can be confident, technically and practically, when utilising digital document signing for a broader suite of documentation.