Everything you need for integrating secure eSignature workflows

The signNow API makes it easy to add eSignatures into your app or website

Electronic Signature in PDF

Easily add eSignatures to PDF files using your computer, tablet or phone.

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What is a valid electronic signature?

Electronic signatures first appeared in the 1990s and were officially recognized by US industry laws — UETA and ESIGN Acts (in 1999 and 2000 accordingly). These acts proclaimed eSignatures have the same legal status and validity as handwritten signatures – provided they comply with the following requirements:
  • There is clear evidence of the signer’s intention to sign a document (e.g., the person creates their signature by typing their name or drawing it with a mouse);
  • Signers must give consent to do business electronically (they confirm this by checking a specific box or proceeding with a particular button);
  • There must be a record in the system about the signing process, and it must be generated at a time of signature creation;
  • All parties to an agreement must receive their completed copies of the document.

If the tool you use to electronically sign PDF files and other documents meets the above requirements, then your eSignatures are valid. All forms eSigned in this way are legally binding and court-acceptable.

Is there an app to sign a PDF electronically?

Yes, many solutions offer eSignature functionality. However, not all meet industry standards for electronic signatures. To make an electronic signature in PDF documents valid and court-admissible, choose a tool that meets national and international laws like ESIGN, UETA, eIDAS, etc. Consider using signNow, a professional, trustworthy eSignature service complying with all the above regulations and meeting data security requirements. signNow is a cloud-based solution – meaning you can access it from anywhere with any internet-connected device and get instant access to your paperwork. If you prefer managing and approving documents on a mobile device, you can also install the signNow application for iOS or Android.

How do I create an eSignature in PDF with signNow?

signNow provides users with three eSigning methods: you can type your name and select a stylized font, insert an image of your handwritten signature, or simply draw it with a mouse, stylus, or your finger. To create an eSignature in PDF, log in to your signNow account, upload a file (from your device or cloud storage), and open it in the editor. You can fill out any blank fields in your form using the left-side toolbar. Then drop the My Signature field where you need to sign a PDF. After that, select your preferred signing method and click the Sign button. It only takes a few clicks to legally sign any document with signNow. To make the signing process even faster, you can set a signature as your default one and apply it in two clicks anytime you need it.

What is the best way to add an eSignature to a PDF on a Mac?

macOS users have a built-in Preview program enabling them to manage their documents without installing additional editors on their devices. This tool can be used for drawing signatures. However, the Preview doesn’t comply with eSignature regulations as it doesn’t allow users to identify signers, and it doesn’t keep an audit log. Therefore, you can’t utilize it for making legally acceptable electronic signatures.

Consider using signNow instead. It’s a recognized and award-winning eSignature solution that fully complies with major industry standards and laws. Since signNow is cloud-based, you can use it on any device. Register for an account with signNow to easily create legally-binding electronic signatures on PDF documents on Mac and collect valid eSigned agreements from partners and clients within clicks. Also, the service enables you to insert an electronic signature into a Word file. After uploading a Word document into your account, the system automatically converts it into a PDF format.

Can I edit and sign a PDF in Google Docs?

Yes, signNow provides users with several add-ons that allow them to edit files and insert electronic signatures into PDF forms right from your Google services, including Google Drive and Google Docs, without switching between different tabs.

After you create an account with signNow, select the subscription plan that suits you. Then navigate to the Google Workspace Marketplace, and search for the signNow for Google Drive and signNow for Google Docs add-ons. The first one allows you to right-click on any file in your Google Drive and open it immediately in our editor to fill out, adjust your document, and electronically sign your PDF files. The second add-on enables you to quickly invite others to eSign your Google Docs file.

How can I add an electronic signature to a PDF for free?

There are tools on the market that promise eSigning solutions at no cost. However, those are either insecure, provide limited functionality, or allow you to approve only a certain number of documents (usually about three docs). If you constantly work with paperwork online, you need a reliable and robust solution. Consider choosing signNow, a professional eSignature service that perfectly suits individuals and SMBs. It offers a free 7-day trial, so you can test all its Premium features and decide if it suits your needs. Sign up and start your free trial today! Now you can securely sign PDF documents for free – without limits.
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