How To Sign a Google Doc
With everyone using Google, knowing how to electronically sign a Google Doc is becoming necessary common knowledge. Trying to insert a signature in Google Docs with the tools readily available can be frustrating at best.
There are a lot of Chrome add-ons and other methods to get a signature on the dotted line within Google Docs, some of which are free. But the bottom line is that these questionably-signed Google Docs are rarely legally binding, and they are much more trouble than they’re worth.
The best way to sign documents in Google Docs is to use a service like jSign. jSign makes it incredibly easy to get as many signatures as you need for contracts, lease agreements, non-disclosure agreements, arbitration agreements, and more – without add-ons or software.
How to electronically sign a Google Doc with jSign
Most of the time, you can digitally sign Google Docs without issues, but not all electronic or digital signatures through add-ons are enforceable. There are certain requirements that must be met for a signature to be legally valid. These requirements can vary by state, by document, or by other caveats.
Can you insert a signature in Google Docs that is legally binding?
In general, digital signatures must have the following evidence to back them up:
Evidence that there was implicit intent to sign. This doesn’t have to be an actual hand-drawn signature. It can be any action that the signer has to take, such as typing their name or creating a specific code.
You must make a record of the signature at the time of execution and distribute it to all parties that signed the document. If you have more than one person signing and they are available at different times, you must make a record after each signature is added.
The signer should opt-in and agree to sign documents digitally or conduct business electronically with a signature click or other deliberate action.
All of this evidence of legal electronic signatures is available through your jSign dashboard with audit logs and the Certificate of Completion. Of course, there are some documents such as wills, some trusts, and powers of attorney that cannot be signed digitally. Most documents that must be notarized also must be signed in-person.
As with anything though, there are some extenuating circumstances that can lead to exceptions to these basic rules. Some states now allow certain types of Google Docs needing notarization to use an eSignature. Each state, agency, or locale may have their own rules for binding signatures, or they may have their own document add-ons that need to be installed.
How do you electronically sign a Google Doc?
Setting up your jSign account and preparing your Google Docs for signatures is a fast and easy process that doesn’t require downloading add-ons or software. Our intuitive and user-friendly platform is easy to navigate, so you can get started signing Google Docs right away. Here’s how to add a signature in a Google Doc with jSign.
1. Log into your jSign account
If you don’t already have an account, create one now. Once your account is set up, add Google Drive or other external services (Dropbox, OneDrive). You will not be able to upload Google Docs for signatures until you link your Google Drive to your account.
2. Prepare your document and upload from Google Drive.
You should begin with making sure your document is available in Google Drive and ready to upload. If your document began in a Word, PDF, or other format, upload it to your Google Drive and open in Google Docs. You can then follow the rest of the upload instructions. Upload Google Docs from the jSign dashboard, or by clicking the “Upload Document” option from the left pane. Select your document from Google Drive to upload. Although G Suite is the best option, you can also upload a copy of the document from OneDrive or DropBox, with any of the following extensions: PDF, Docx, PPT, PPTx, XLS, BMP, PNG, JPG. You can also use a template in jSign for your Google Doc before getting signatures. When creating a new or one-time document, the jSign templates can be very helpful, cutting the time to prepare your document in half.
3. Add signers to the document and insert signature placeholders.
All paid jSign memberships allow for unlimited electronic signatures per document. You can add frequent signers to your contacts, organizing by lists for documents you frequently sign. For each document, choose which signature placeholders are assigned to which signers, and in what order they should proceed to sign the document.
4. Edit your placeholder to create a custom electronic signature.
To sign a document you have prepared, click to edit your placeholder and create a unique signature. You can draw a new signature, upload a signature, type a signature, or select a saved signature from your jSign account. By saving your signature, you can save time when you sign each new document.
5. Save your document, and set due dates for additional signatures.
When you’re ready for others to sign, save your document and prepare it for other parties. You can set due dates for the additional signatures, and double check that email addresses and other contact information is correct.
6. Click finish to send the document to yourself and other signers.
When you click finish, the document will be sent to the inboxes of other signers, or to your own inbox if you’re the only signer. Each signer will be notified of their designated signature order, deadline, and electronic signature placeholder.
7. Track your document progress and changes.
You can confirm that the document was sent through tracking options in the Documents menu, where you can see all of your current documents to be signed and their progress. jSign also automates progress monitoring with notifications of when documents have been executed. Not only that, but each document’s unique QR code will let you know right away if changes were made to the document since it was signed.