Latest news on electronic signing of documents by companies during COVID-19 lockdowns

01 September 2021

The federal government has passed temporary legislation to allow companies to:
• execute documents electronically;
• hold meetings remotely and digitally; and
• keep documents relating to the meetings electronically.

The Treasury Laws Amendment (2021 Measures No. 1) Bill 2021 (Cth) (the Bill) was passed on 10 August 2021 and it temporarily amends the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) to allow for the above.

These changes will remain in effect until 31 March 2022.

These temporary changes were overdue and are welcomed after the previous emergency legislation expired in March 2021. They now make it easier and clearer for companies to continue business dealings amid COVID-19 pandemic enforced lockdowns in much of the country.

There are some practical considerations when arranging electronic company signing including a requirement that the document signed must be a complete copy of that document (i.e. signing the execution page only isn’t acceptable for these purposes). Split execution is permitted though, so separate copies of complete documents can be signed electronically by company directors.

These changes need to become permanent to remove any uncertainty and reflect the needs of modern business practice.

Lawlab’s service is digital and makes document signing easy
Lawlab legal services will not be interrupted by lockdowns. The lawlab national team of lawyers are all remote work enabled and lawlab uses the full suite of digital tools such as Zoom, Rundl, electronic contracts, Docusign, remote Verification of Identity, and PEXA electronic settlements to ensure that your property transaction, new will or other legal matter will be completed successfully.

Disclaimer This information is general in nature only and does not constitute legal advice. Lawlab accepts no liability for the content of this information. You should obtain legal advice specific to your individual circumstances. Lawlab’s liability is limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.
Micaela Wilcock
Micaela Wilcock
Legal Advisor

Micaela is a settlements advisor at Lawlab, where she loves going above and beyond as well as connecting with her customers. She holds a law degree as well as a degree in Environmental Science. Having only recently moved to Brisbane, Micaela is currently enjoying the sunny warm weather that Brisbane has to offer.

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