Wet Ink Signatures: Since ancient times, legally binding contracts have only been formed through signatures on written documents. The symbols and images that the Sumerians and ancient Egyptians used to convey meaning to documents have changed quite a bit since then.
The way solopreneurs, small businesses, and large enterprises handled the gathering of signatures has changed as a result of an increase in the use of automation and web-based technology. Wet signatures were once the norm for important documents at many of these companies, but that has changed over the last ten years.
In today’s blog, we’ll discuss in-depth wet ink signatures, the difference between ink wet signatures and eSignature solutions, the pros and cons of wet ink signatures, address a few frequently asked questions, and why eSignature is highly preferred in present times over wet ink signatures.
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Wet Ink Signatures: An Introduction
Simply put, a handwritten seal of approval is known as a “wet,” “pen-and-ink,” or physical signature. A wet signature is one that is made with a pen when it is applied directly to a hard copy of a document, such as a contract or a proposal. Typically, the signer’s name appears in stylized cursive in their signature.
Most people all over the world accept wet signatures as a valid form of document approval, and most have a distinctive signature. In the event that further verification is needed, the individual’s signature, which is meant to be distinctive to them, will serve as evidence that they have signed the document.
Pen-and-ink signatures are considered legally binding in the majority of countries and jurisdictions around the world. To prevent forgeries, additional criteria might be needed, such as the requirement that documents be signed in front of a witness or notary.
Wet Ink Signatures: Why Should You Use them?
Nearly every circumstance in which you have access to a physical document qualifies for the use of wet signatures. Wet signatures, however, are irreplaceable in a few specific situations.
Certain bank loans, home leases, and other transactions involving money required a wet signature. There are a few smaller nations that have not yet been included in ESIGN (Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act), which involves over 180 nations.
The last thing to remember is the use of wet ink signatures when it makes sense to do so, such as when you’re writing a contract quickly between friends and it makes more sense to have it signed in person rather than by email. Use wet signatures if you need a non-technical signatory who feels uncomfortable using anything other than a wet signature, or if you need a document signed by someone who is not very tech-savvy. In summary, you should only use wet signatures when they are necessary or easier than the other option.
Pros of Wet Ink Signatures
While the use of wet ink signatures has become significantly low since the pandemic, there still exist a few points which give it an edge:
Personality and branding
The branding potential of wet ink signatures is enormous. For instance, it is well known that Walt Disney’s wet ink signature served as the inspiration for the Disney logo. Wet ink signatures are the obvious choice for autographs as well, and any famous person without a doubt has a carefully-designed wet signature to sign their photographs or their work, as appropriate. When handwriting a letter, wet signatures are essential because they give the letter some personality and have a certain warmth to them.
Social and psychological effects
Wet signatures require the originator to be available and sign the document in person, typically along with the other signees, in contrast to online signatures which are much faster and more efficient. But, this could make wet signatures more memorable for the signers and allow for socializing during the event.
Cons of Wet Ink Signatures
With the pandemic taking place and constant technological innovation, there have appeared manifold issues with wet ink signatures:
Wet signatures are too simple to forge, unfortunately. Wet ink signatures are ultimately only protected by their individuality, and with enough practice, even the most complex wet signatures can be faked. The main role of notaries public in the U.S. government is to serve as unbiased witnesses, and this is precisely because there isn’t enough security in signatures. Wet signatures can also be used to pay for other things besides a notary.
Pricey and problematic
Wet ink signatures can be very expensive, in addition to notaries. Paying for paper and ink will be your first expense. If you don’t frequently sign multiple documents, this isn’t a significant payment. There is also the matter of where the two parties are. A wet ink signature requires the presence of two witnesses, and the parties to the contract must sign in front of them.
The progression may become more challenging if there are more signers present than the minimum requirement of four people in one room. Having to get everyone to the same place takes time and money, which only makes the inconvenience worse. All of this is predicated on the assumption that everyone is already present. Wet signatures are much more difficult when the signers are in different locations.
Immoral for the environment
Even if you have the money to invest in wet ink signatures, printing, filing, and transporting people to and from the signing location all have an adverse environmental impact. There is simply no need to use resources inefficiently with a signing method as more businesses move toward going paperless.
Wet signatures can, at most, match the speed of electronic signatures. A lot slower is the worst that can happen. Your signees must be present and in the same place in order to sign a wet signature. However, that is merely the beginning of the procedure. A copy may be given to the signer’s attorney by them. The document might warrant a closer read for some signatories. They might then want to make changes or additions to the document, forcing you to restart the entire process. And that’s assuming you don’t have to wait for a person to come from outside the town or mail the document.
Wet Ink Signatures vs Electronic Signatures: What’s the Difference?
The appearance of wet signatures and electronic signatures is the first distinction between them.
Usually resembling the signee’s name written in cursive, a wet signature is a physical mark. An electronic signature is a digital amendment to the document, typically in the form of an additional image.
Wet signatures can only be verified by the presence of witnesses and the complexity of the signature, whereas electronic signatures can be validated legally and traced back to their original creator.
Online signatures are simpler, quicker, and, in most cases, all the more reliable than their wet equivalents, even though both are used to demonstrate the intent to uphold a contract.
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Major Reasons to Choose eSignature Solutions over Wet Ink Signatures
1. Time savings. Time can be greatly reduced by switching from wet ink signatures to an electronic one. When you need the signature of another party, you won’t have to schedule meetings, take the time to travel, or deal with traffic jams. Also, consider the amount of time you could save if you needed to sign a document with a foreigner. Additionally, using e. signature allows business operations to continue without interruption while you wait for a signature.
2. More reliable. Each change is made visible through the use of sophisticated and qualified electronic signatures. As a result, it is much more challenging to forge documents bearing an e. signature. Furthermore, in this case, no one can ever copy or rewrite your eSignature.
3. Cost-cutting measures. You can cut costs on the workforce required to prepare the documents, handle printing, scanning, and other tasks by using e. signature. You can also cut costs on printing, travel, and sending documents via mail or courier. The difference is noticeable and obvious if you work with a lot of documents.
4. Conserving paper. There is no need to print e. documents because they are available digitally. Additionally, you’ll spare the envelope paper. Additionally, the saving paper helps preserve forests. Did you know that only about 5 billion trees are planted annually for every 15 billion trees that are felled? Consequently, fewer trees will need to be cut down if everyone starts using less paper.
5. It is portable. You can electronically sign documents while you’re on the go. You could still sign a paper anywhere you go, also when you’re on a trip for work or pleasure. You won’t have to postpone your plans in order to sign a document, and neither will your partners or coworkers have to wait for you to return.
6. Making room. Just imagine how much room you could save for paper archives if you stopped using regular documents. You won’t need to keep all of your paper records on file in your office; you can get rid of those boxes. This extra room can be put to better use, and you won’t ever have to waste a lot of time trying to find the right documents when you need them.
7. No documents get lost. You can be certain that documents you sign with an electronic signature won’t disappear from those repositories. Since all of your documents are stored on your computer, finding and searching for them will be simpler. Additionally, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that the document always bears your signature and that you won’t forget to do so.
8. Being technologically advanced. Being technologically savvy is now practically required because technology is everywhere. It makes sense that as technology improves our quality of life, more and more people will begin to use modern methods of doing things instead of more traditional ones. The benefits of being contemporary and technologically savvy are typically obvious when weighing the advantages and disadvantages of the various approaches.
9. Usage by everyone. E. signatures’ ability to be used for a variety of other purposes in addition to signing documents is one of its many outstanding advantages. With electronic signatures, you can access a variety of self-service and electronic service portals, including those for banking, the government, and other public institutions, where you can submit queries, files, declarations, etc. electronically.
10. Highly Convenient. This final point can be used to summarise the previous ones. You can perform a number of tasks with e. signature, including signing documents whenever and wherever you want. You are no longer reliant on a location, an hour, or any other circumstance. Since everyone is busy these days and accustomed to simplicity, we believe that convenience warranted its own spot on the list.
When can eSignatures replace wet ink signatures?
Electronic signatures can substitute for wet ink signatures in a wide range of use cases, with a few exceptions that are covered in the following section. In the United States and other industrialized nations, electronic records and signatures can have the same legal significance and effects as paper records and handwritten signatures.
To recognize the enforceability of e-signature, the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN), the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA), the Electronic Identification and Trust Services Regulation (eIDAS) in the European Union, and other comparable laws around the world were passed. But these laws do have some exceptions, just like anything else in life.
Wet Ink Signatures: When should you use them?
Wet ink signatures is required on a few occasions in order to make a document legally binding. When a Notary Public in the United States needs to confirm the identity of the document signer, a wet signature may be necessary (s). Additionally, wet signatures are needed on a number of documents, including those relating to insurance benefits, adoptions, divorces, court orders, and adoptions. When the recipient of the document requests it, you should also let them wet sign the document. Some people still view it as the only acceptable way to formally endorse a document, regardless of how outdated you may find it to be.
Wet Ink Signatures: Answering Frequently Asked Questions
Difference between wet ink signatures and dry signatures
Wet signatures are different from dry signatures in that they are typically made on paper with pens or ink. Dry signatures, in contrast, do not require ink and can be made using electronic signatures or other signing processes.
How to create wet ink signatures?
Wet ink signatures are made on paper using pen or ink, so you just need to write in your initials or normally sign a paper, that’s it!
Explain a live signature.
A live signature is a type of signature in which the signer has either added a picture of their signing, were using an eSignature tool, or introduce their stamp of approval to an electronic document.
Can we scan wet ink signatures?
Scannable documents with wet signatures can be securely stored online. A physical contract can be signed with a pen and scanned to accomplish this. Even so, using an eSignature app to sign agreements instead of this still necessitates more manual labor.
Crove: The Best eSignature Solution and Wet Ink Signatures Alternative
Crove focuses on making document management and signature process much easier than ever by streamlining business processes, abolishing tedious tasks, improving efficiency, and enhancing business processes. Crove is the most cost-effective document automation and generation framework with its most advanced eSignature solution on the market.
Your information can’t be compromised because Crove uses high-level security encryption and standards. Any document, regardless of type, can be handled by the Crove eSignarute solution, which also offers safety precautions to guarantee confidentiality.
For the price of a basic plan, you get premium features that are included in most solutions. A free version of our solution is also available, which you can use to learn more about our features and use them to simplify all of your document-related processes. For online document signing, this app is undoubtedly the best.
You can check out the solution by signing up here, and understand for yourself, how simple and convenient it is to use the Crove eSignature solution.