How can digital signatures improve the court system?

How can the court system benefit from digital signatures?

The complicated legal landscape of the U.S. court system can be difficult to navigate. In order to maintain efficiency throughout the entire legal process, having the right tools on hand can make a serious difference. When individuals and court officials sign documents like marriage certificates, court orders and wills, their signatures can be verified by using quality tools.

Let's take a look at the top five ways investing in digital signature solutions can have a positive impact on courts across the country:

"Court offices can cut down on paper waste and contribute to sustainability efforts."

1. Improve sustainability

Being able to sign your name online with secure encryption technology doesn't just enhance security. By eliminating physical documents from the equation, court offices can cut down on paper waste and contribute to sustainability efforts within government. In 2009, President Obama signed an executive order stating that government offices needed to set forth a plan for making improvements to current sustainability. Ever since, agencies have been required to submit these plans on an annual basis. Investing in digital signature solutions would represent a step in the right direction for the creation of these plans.

2. Promote better productivity practices

A side effect of improving sustainability is the impact electronic signature solutions have on how much time employees can save around the office. Because your documents aren't wasting time being bogged down in the postal system, digital signatures make the process of gathering and storing confidential documents that much easier. When individuals are able to verify court documents with their digital signatures, it signifies to these government offices that they are, in fact, legally binding documents without question. This saves the time it would take to make sure these files are legitimate – meaning office employees have more breathing room and time to perform other necessary tasks.

3. Enhance government efficiency

Saved time and better productivity leads directly into enhanced operations. In order to provide the best services to citizens and get more done, government offices have to be extremely efficient. The time it takes for a physical document to get from point A to point B – or from a citizen's house to the court office – is time that could be spent focusing on other tasks and improving processes across the board.

A recent study conducted by the Volcker Alliance indicated that the government has a long way to go in terms of becoming more efficient, The Post and Courier reported. Agencies need to invest in solutions that will allow them to improve reactions, curb the time required by the bureaucratic process and enhance the services they're able to deliver to their citizens. Digital signature solutions offer that level of reactivity, which leads to better efficiency down the line.

4. Encrypt data for better protection

With clear encryption methods and a guaranteed level of security, having a digital signature can impact how safe your information stays online. It's important to note that since a digital signature is legally binding and works to verify sender identity, it can be used to ensure that no fraud is being committed by any party involved.

This extra level of security can also have broader implications beyond those just for individuals. An obvious example is the Linda Green mortgage incident that took place from 2004 to 2009. According to The Housing Justice Foundation, during that five-year period, more than 2 million signatures of someone named Linda Green were registered on real estate documents. In part as a result of this fraud, the housing market suffered serious consequences. The fact of the matter was that employees of a mortgage services company based in Atlanta signed the name on those documents, effectively committing fraud and bringing the legality of the contracts into question.

5. Contribute to technology strategies

A digital signature solution isn't the signature itself. Instead, this term refers to the underlying technology beneath the electronic signatures that guarantees the identity of the person signing the document. Therefore, when court organizations invest in digital signature solutions, they are contributing to the overall goal of improving government interactions with the public. In fact, Government Technology contributors Pedro Nava and David Beier wrote late last year that one important way to improve government is to invest in new digital techniques that simplify dealings with the people these offices serve.

To learn more about encryption technology and how it benefits law offices and county courts, download our white paper today.

Category: Cybersecurity, Government, Legal

- January 25, 2016
Image-X Enterprises is a global leader in document management, content management, workflow and electronic filing systems. Since its establishment in 1989, Image-X has created multiple solutions for document management problems related to government, healthcare, education and financial institutions.