How to e-sign a document on your iPhone

James Lintzer |

An electronic signature, also known as an eSignature, is a method of signing contracts and other documents on your mobile, computer or your tablet. It allows you to sign electronic documents and share them without having to dig out the old printer and do the whole process of printing, signing and scanning your documents. 

For many business people in the world today, the Apple iPhone is the ultimate business tool that offers speed, flexibility and a robust operating system. That’s why it makes so much sense that jSign built an app that lets you take care of e-signatures straight from the iPhone. 

Can You E-sign Using an iPhone? 

It’s possible to add an electronic signature on the iPhone using a variety of different methods, each with its own pros and cons. One great feature of an iPhone is that you can ‘draw’ on the touchscreen using your fingertip or a stylus, which lets you add a unique, hand-drawn signature that closely resembles your own wet signature — the term used to describe any analog signature drawn on paper with ink from a pen, stamp, or seal. 

Draw a Signature using Markup 

One common way to sign documents on the iPhone — though not one we recommend — is to screenshot the document you wish to sign and then draw your signature using the markup tool. This is a fast, convenient way to add an electronic signature that most iPhone users have likely tried at least once. 

This method is usually not legally binding, and it also means you have to convert the document you’re signing into an image file to sign it and send it back. This makes the document less usable and less user-friendly because you can no longer search, select, or copy text and it can leave your document looking unprofessional. 

There is also no way for you to track and trace signatures with this method, and it really only works for documents that require just one signature. 

Draw or Type a Signature using PDF tools 

You probably already know that the markup tool is available for image files on Apple iOS. Did you know it is also embedded in the PDF tool Preview? 

If someone sends you a PDF document you can download it to your phone, and then simply: 

  1. Launch Preview and open your new PDF file 
  2. Click or tap the “Markup” icon
  3. Click or tap the “Signature” icon
  4. Choose “Create Signature”
  5. Draw your signature, type your signature, or upload an image file

 If the document you were sent is not already in PDF format, then you’ll need to convert it to PDF using Pages or another word-processing app before you open it in Preview, which slows down the whole process.  

Again, this method works for documents that do not require multiple signatures. 

Use a Dedicated eSignature Platform or App 

There’s no question that the most reliable way to create electronic signatures with an iPhone is to use a dedicated eSignature app like jSign. These apps allow you to create legally binding eSignatures on iPhone. 

Using jSign on your iPhone 

jSign makes it simple to draw or type your eSignature into documents on the web-based app. You can also upload images of your signature and store them on the app. It is a powerful tool for users who need to collect multiple signatures on one document. You can also send your document out to multiple signatories at once and collect all of their signatures in one place. That makes it so useful — not only for adding your own e-signature on an iPhone but also for requesting signatures from others. 

How to use jSign to add an electronic signature on iPhone 

To use jSign for adding esignatures to iPhone you’ll need to sign up for a jSign account. You can start with a 14-day free trial.  Once you’ve signed up, follow these steps:

  • Open the web-based app and log in to your jSign account
  • Upload the document from your iPhone using the Upload tool
  • Add yourself and anyone else you need as a signatory 
  • Insert signature placeholders 
  • Add your custom signature by signing on your touchscreen, typing or using an image of your signature
  • Save your document 

Not only can you sign the document yourself, but you can also send the document to others to co-sign and even request signatures. jSign allows you to set due dates and reminders for e-signatures, and it provides real-time notifications so you know when everyone has done their bit. 

When you or anyone else e-signs a document jSign issues a Certificate of Completion. This certificate is stamped with encrypted blockchain technology that records the IP address, location and timestamp as well as other data to help clearly identify who signed the document and in which version. It also includes a QR code that you can scan to go directly to the document where you can view its history and signatures.  

Is an Electronic Signature on a Phone Legally Binding? 

An eSignature is legally binding if you can demonstrate the following three conditions are met when it is signed:   

  • Clear intent to sign the document by the signatory 
  • Clear identifying information for the person or persons signing the document 
  • Consent to use a legally binding electronic signature and disclosure that one will be captured 

You can add a legally binding signature on your iPhone if everyone knows you’re using an electronic signature, you can prove who signed the document and you can demonstrate that everyone involved knows an eSignature is the method used to execute the document. 

Two pieces of legislation make eSignatures legally binding. The Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) makes electronic records equally as valid as analog records, and the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (E-SIGN Act) defines what is required to make an eSignature legally binding. 

The E-SIGN act states: “an electronic sound, symbol, or process, attached to or logically associated with a contract or other record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record.” This is why you need to satisfy the three conditions above to make a legally binding electronic signature.  

What Sort of Documents Can be Signed on an iPhone? 

There are many different forms, contracts, or applications you might want to add an electronic signature on using your iPhone. 

For example, school permission slips from your child’s teacher, a memorandum of understanding while you’re negotiating a contract out on the road or a signature on a formal letter of complaint. When it comes to tasks such as applications for credit, insurance and even permission to check your credit record – all activities that require a quick signature, it makes sense to complete those forms and execute those agreements online. 

Electronic signatures allow you to do just that. 

How Do I Know Someone Can’t Forge my eSignature? 

The digital nature of electronic signatures can feel scary at first. After all, we know how easy it is to edit a Pages document on our iPhones. 

Using a dedicated eSignature platform like jSign provides control of your electronic signature because of the blockchain technology used to stamp each e-signature with a unique data key. This key is then locked to a chain of other data that makes it extremely difficult to falsify. 

Each time you sign a document with jSign you are protected by data that shows the timestamp, location, and identity of the person signing the document, and also then locks in a record of the document version itself. This chain of data self-validates using a special encryption key. That means if any one record in the chain is altered, the other records automatically reject that chain. This helps protect your documents and your signature and makes it harder for people to question the validity of your documents in the future.

Signup for jSign to Add Electronic Signatures with an iPhone 

Say goodbye to opening up the laptop, breaking out the printer, or struggling with the scanner anymore. jSign makes it easy to electronically sign documents right from your iPhone on one simple web-based app. It also allows you to request signatures and get multiple signatures on important documents that you can then use for home, school or office. 

 jSign electronic signatures are supported by a strong and trackable audit trail using blockchain technology. The web app is easy to use from any device, and you can switch between your iPhone or Macbook without losing track of where you’re at. You even get access to your signed documents so you can easily refer back to them anytime. 

Using electronic signatures is convenient, easy and reliable when you choose a dedicated eSignature provider like jSign. If you’re ready to start managing e-signatures all from one place then start your 14-day free trial with jSign today.

James Lintzer
Senior Marketing Manager

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