HM Land Registry UK Electronic Signature and Witnessing

The acceptance of electronic signatures by the HM Land Registry (HMLR) has been an eagerly anticipated reform for a number of years. Printing, posting and scanning documents isn’t always feasible, and since the COVID-19 lockdown, the requirement for a digital alternative to wet signatures has increased greatly.

In response, on July 27, 2020, the HMLR announced that it will accept witnessed electronic signatures (WES) with immediate effect;

  1. With an objective of transitioning as quickly as possible to the use of digital signatures (more specifically Qualified Electronic Signatures)
  2. A specific timeframe around when the use of QES will be accepted is yet to be announced, but we would expect that the HMLR is motivated to transition to QES sooner than later to further streamline its digital process. We commend the HMLR for embracing such digital transformation efforts and we ourselves will continue to also lean into their initiatives.


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