FMGO has the signature capture option. In order to move GO and the iPad to the next level would be the option of making these signatures legally binding. Is there any way to do this?
Legally binding ... where? FileMaker is used worldwide — the permutations are mind boggling.
I don’t think there are any barriers to implementing this in FileMaker Go today: most of the requirements are around policy, process, consent, and data retention — not technical.
Asking FileMaker to provide this “auto magically” would be inflexible and extremely difficult to keep in sync with differences in the law based on location, industry, etc.
If you don’t want to mess with this, integrate with a service that does — there are hundreds with different capabilities and verticals... and almost all have an API.
This article gives a good overview of the subject:
ESIGN Act: 5 factors that make electronic signatures legally binding in U.S
I think you would need to consult a lawyer in your jurisdiction to determine what would make an electronic signature 'legal binding'. I don't know that FileMaker could do much more than they have done technically. Do you know if it is legal binding? And if not, why is it not legally binding? In Australia at least, the law takes a long time to catch up with technology.
Seems to me FM could Go to a layout, the signature capture dialog pops up, client signs, FM exports that layout with signature in to a container. I think if as long as FileMaker binds the signature to the layout ( without allowing us developers to be able to change ) it would be relatively simple and legal. I think it would work?
Sent from my iPad
"binds the signature to a layout"?
The signature is data and the layout is interface.
Are you a lawyer? You need to be to comment on what is "legal" and where that applies.
It is a very difficult area making things 'legal'.
No, I’m not a lawyer, but I assume FM has some on staff (somebody wrote that software license agreement) and they could easily figure this out. After all Productive Computing has this option, but it’s only for windows computers. FileMaker has started pushing their product line (1st time I’ve seen them do this and I’ve been with them since v3) and if they wish to expand their base to businesses large and small, this would be a great way to streamline workflow and eliminate paper. It would allow them to sell more seats of FM and in turn allow Apple to sell more iOS devices.
Your assumption may be wrong. They do have legal staff but not for that purpose. Just saying.
Ultimately, it is the responsibility of the FileMaker developer to create a solution that satisfies legal requirements in the specific jurisdiction and industry in which they are working.
I do not expect FileMaker Inc., to do the legal work for me – they just produce the tool to create the solution. In fact, I would suggest it would be impossible for FileMaker to cover off all legal requirements for signature capture or anything else.
What you need for a request of this nature is to know what it is that makes the signature capture not legally defensible and then request a specific feature you could implement to make it so. If you have not already checked, the current features used in the right way could be OK.
When you’re selling a product as FileMaker is, the more functions you provide a developer, the more seats you can sell. I’m just asking FM to say somebody signed this layout with this signature and it’s bound and could not be altered by Me the developer. I’m not asking them to confirm it’s Mr. X signing. It’s no difference then me providing paper document signed by Mr. X. If It goes to court it’s still on me to prove Mr. X did indeed sign it.
I’ve checked with my lawyer and his concern is me having the programmable ability to place that captured signature on any layout I want to.
After all, every credit card terminal and iOS program has the signature option. As well as almost every hospital or doctors office we go to, now requires a signature on a reader.
Just seems to me that a company the size of Apple could easily figure this out.
My final comment on this – remember that FileMaker is not Apple (albeit a fully owned subsidiary), and FileMaker is a very small company in the scheme of things.
I don't claim to know what would be "legally binding" in any given jurisdiction, but I would like to see the signature capture improved, which may, in many cases satisfy your requirement. See: Store metadata with signature capture
I just found this software pDoc Signer for iPad's by topazsystems.com. It allows signatures completed on iPads to be legally bound to PDF's.
Is it possible with FileMaker Go 16 to:
Export a layout as a PDF onto the iPad
Open the PDF using pDoc, sign and then save the signed PDF to iPad
Invoke a FM Go script that imports that signed PDF back into a GO container?
Retrieving data ...