In June 2000, the United States implemented rules addressing the use of electronic signatures in global and national commerce. 15 U.S.C. §§ 7001 to 7006. Some two decades later, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has caught up. In early December 2020, the SEC adopted amendments to Regulation S-T and the Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval system (EDGAR) Filer Manual to permit the use of electronic signature authentication in connection with certain electronic filings on EDGAR. The SEC also updated several rules and forms under the Securities Act of 1933, Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Investment Company Act of 1940 to permit the use of electronic signatures in signature authentication documents in connection with certain other filings.
If you have any questions about how this might impact you, please feel free to reach out to the authors at Venable for guidance.