Text messages are not the only way for you to enter into contracts with an electronic platform. Federal and regional laws provide for certain electronic transactions and cases in which electronic or digital signatures are an acceptable alternative to traditional signatures. In California, contracts that require a signature before coming into force can be executed with an electronic signature. In several recent cases, it has been confirmed that an enforceable guarantee can be created by a number of emails authenticated by the guarantor`s online signature. Suppose two parties exchange a series of emails in which they agree to edit a standard document. Although the language used in the exchange is far from formally legal and there is never a comprehensive agreement containing all the keywords exported, the parties intend to be bound by the terms they negotiate informally and agree in the exchange of e-mail. If a person enters his or her name in an e-mail to indicate that he or she is in contact with his authority and that he assumes responsibility for its content, this will be considered a signature for the purposes of an agreement. This is also the case when only the first name, initials or perhaps even a nickname are used. As long as these conditions are met, text messages and other forms of electronic communication are considered by the courts to be legally enforceable contracts. The E-Sign Act applies primarily to unilateral contracts for which only one party accepts the supplier`s terms. PactSafe`s text-to-sign function is a clear example, as standardized contracts awarded via PactSafe can be immediately depreciated on customers and customers for immediate acceptance.
Due to the novelty of the SMS broadcast and the vagueness of the legal climate, companies and lawyers are better served to regroup in anticipation of a winter in Massachusetts, despite the lure of the sun in California. California`s legislation is unique, while Massachusetts` legislative history is almost identical to that of many other states and is differentiated primarily on the basis of jurisprudence. Therefore, in states that have adopted the Electronics Transactions Act, it is reasonable to assume that courts can develop their own jurisprudence in a manner comparable to that of Massachusetts. A text message is just as compelling as a letter, and most cases have found that a text message from a well-known phone number corresponds to a signed letter. It is important to remember that if you do not want to create an enforceable agreement or guarantee while negotiating in writing or e-mail, you specify that you are negotiating «in accordance with the contract» and that you do not intend to be bound until an official document is executed. Other types of contracts in California With the exception of the above contracts, a text message may, in some cases, create a binding agreement, which is valid in both California and states that have not excluded text messages as evidence of an agreement. In these cases, a text message may be presented as evidence of an oral contract. To create an enforceable contract, the fundamental elements of a contract must be present, including: an offer, acceptance of that offer and some form of consideration, usually like the promise to pay money in exchange for services or a benefit provided by the other party. Finally, some practical steps can be taken by companies to protect themselves from this potential vulnerability. If this is acceptable to both parties, a specific provision can and should be inserted into the draft treaty, which expressly states that the agreement can only be executed by a formal or physical signature, so that a name under an email or text is not enough.  A company could also include a practice of no longer manually entering names under emails or text messages or stopping using text messages during negotiations.