Electronic Signatures for Document Amendments

As of March 21, 2017, amending Subdivision Declarations will be slightly easier and more affordable because Governor Snyder signed into law Public Act 355 of 2016. This law adds new Section 5a to the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (“UETA”). The new Section provides that in single developments containing more than 250 lots or parcels, owners may consent to an amendment of the governing documents by an electronic signature. This ability is only permitted when the owners are otherwise legally able to amend the documents. The UETA defines an electronic signature as an electronic sound, symbol, or process attached to or logically associated with a record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record. Although the language is broad and provides that a signature can be shown as that of the entitled person in any manner, Subdivision and Homeowner Associations should consider having a system in place which can be used to verify the signature is genuine by using a third-party web service or by having verified email addresses on record.