Electronic Signatures (Professional Skills)

  • 03 Jun 2021
  • 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
  • Zoom

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About the webinar: Common law courts treat online contracts and click signatures as if they are paper contracts and pen signatures, and hold parties to click-signed online terms regardless of whether they have read them or not. But equating a mouse click to a pen signature does not take account of the virtual reality that there is no physical limit to online standard form terms, the terms are presented by a machine making negotiation impossible, and the terms may be accompanied by a riot of interactive sounds, colours and pop-ups distracting consumers from reading them. Courts have vitiated online consumer contracts for fraud or misrepresentation, but they have been slow to vitiate online contracts for equitable fraud, such as unconscionability. This presentation suggests that a court in equity may be persuaded that, where the lack of physical limits to the number of terms, the non-negotiable nature of machines and the distractions of sounds, colours, and pop ups are known to an online vendor and exploited by it, a consumer’s assent to the terms may be vitiated for unconscionability

Speaker:  Dr Simon Blount, Barrister State Chambers


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