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How to sign documents when only one trustee has an email address or Connectworks account

Introduction

A person’s ability to sign documents electronically in Connectworks is linked with their having a unique email address. Their email address (and the Connectworks account to which it is registered) is the means through which a person is identified, and as such, the means through which they are identified as the individual performing the signing.

It sometimes happens, however, that each trustee of your client company does not have a unique email address. In these circumstances, you can still publish documents in Connectworks for all trustees to sign, but only those trustees who have registered email addresses will be able to sign them electronically.

Trustees without registered email addresses will need to print and sign hard copies of the document, and deliver either the hard document or a scan of it to their client manager to upload into Connectworks.

Once all trustees have signed the document (either via the electronic signing process, or via print, sign, scan and deliver, or a combination of directors via each process) the client manager can then combine all the signatures into a single document in Connectworks, to record that all trustees have signed.

 

Scenario

The below series of screenshots will cover the process by which a client manager from a professional firm (CW & Associates) can publish a document for all trustees of a client trust (the Blanco Investment Trust) to sign. The Blanco Investment Trust has two directors: William Blake and Nicola Claire. Only William has an email address registered to an account in Connectworks.

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Contents

Step One: Your client manager publishes the document for signing

Step Two: Your client manager reviews the signing status

Step Three: The trustees receive notification of the document to sign

Step Four: William electronically signs the document

Step Five: William chooses his signature

Step Six: Your client manager reviews the signing status

Step Seven: Nicola signs the document

Step Eight: Your client manager reviews the signed document

 

Step One: Your client manager publishes the document for signing

You can publish documents for signing from within a trust's document repository. Simply click on the I would like to… menu, and select Upload a document:

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This will open a screen allowing you to publish the document for signing. You can select the required signatories, identify whether witnessing is required, or place a restriction on the method of signing.

If all trustees are required to sign the document, then you should select the All current trustees must sign signing policy. Where not all trustees have registered email addresses, you should also select No restriction in method of signing. This will allow those trustees who have email addresses to sign the document electronically (if they wish to do so) while also allowing those who do not have email addresses to follow the print, sign, scan and deliver method.

Once you’ve filled out all the requisite fields, click Create and the document will be published.

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Step Two: Your client manager reviews the signing status

When a document has been published for signing, it will automatically be classified into the Awaiting signing filter of the document repository. If your client manager selects the document, they will see that the document is yet to be signed by William or Nicola:

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Step Three: The trustees receive notification of the document to sign

For trustees with registered email addresses, when a document requiring their signature has been published, an email will be sent to their registered email address to advise that the document is in Connectworks and available to be signed.

Trustees who do not have a registered email address - and who therefore do not have a personal account in Connectworks - will not be able to receive this alert email. Client managers will have to communicate with these trustees, and have a copy of the document made available to them, as per their normal processes.

In our scenario, William will receive an email to alert him that the document is available to be signed, but Nicola will not. William’s email will look something like this:

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When William clicks on the link contained in the email, he will be taken to the Connectworks login page. After logging in, the document will be visible in his Workspace inbox:

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Note that from here, William can easily download a hard copy of the document for Nicola to sign. Clicking either view document will take William to a preview of the document, from which it can be downloaded:

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Step Four: William electronically signs the document

William can begin the process of e-signing the document by clicking the sign button:

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This will bring up a copy of the document to review. When William has read the document, he clicks Approve and sign:

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William will first be asked to confirm that he has read the document, and that he consents to being bound by its contents. To move to the next stage, he marks the checkbox affirming his consent and clicks Next:

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Step Five: William chooses his signature

William will now be asked to create a signature for the document. He has three options: draw a signature with his mouse; let us draw a signature for him; or, if he prefers to print and sign a hardcopy, he can scan the signed document and upload it to show his signature as well. Note that which option William chooses is purely a matter of preference, and in no way impacts upon the validity of the signing:

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Once William has chosen his signature style for the document, and clicked Next, he’ll be taken to the final confirmation screen. He will be asked to declare that he is the person named as the signatory, that he consents to the signature drawn (by him or by us, as in the screenshot below) being considered a valid representation of his signature, and that he consents to the document being signed. He then be asked to re-enter his Connectworks password, to confirm that he is still the person currently operating his Connectworks account. If he consents to this final stage of the signing process and clicks Sign the document, William’s signing is done:

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Step Six: Your client manager reviews the signing status

While only William has signed the document, it will remain in the Awaiting signing filter of the trust's document repository. When your client manager selects the document, however, they will be able to see that William has signed:

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Step Seven: Nicola signs the document

Because Nicola does not have an email address or a personal account in Connectworks, to sign the document she must obtain a physical copy (either from William or from her client manager), sign this, and have it or a scan of it provided back to her client manager.

Once the client manager has a scanned copy of Nicola’s signed document, they can upload this against the document contained in the document repository, to combine Nicola’s signed version with William’s.

To do this, locate the document using the Awaiting Signing filter. To upload the signed copy, simply select the document, click on the cogs, and click upload signature:

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Your client manager can then upload the signed document, fill out the rest of the details, and click Upload and sign to record the document as having been signed by Nicola:

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The document will now show as having been signed by both William and Nicola, and be moved to the Signed filter of your document repository. The signing is complete:

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Step Eight: Your client manager reviews the signed document

To view the signed document, your client manager can select it, click on the cogs, and click download:

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They can also view or download the document in the company’s minute book:

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The compiled document will include a certificate containing the details of the different signings and signing methods employed by the signatories, and an audit trail of the actions performed on the document. It will also include the representations of any electronic signatures made by any signatories, and copies of any signed and scanned hard copies.

In the exemplar below, the certificate states that the document has been electronically signed by William, and signed in hard copy by Nicola. This hard copy has been made available to their client manager (Simon Jones) who has verified the signing and attached it to the electronic version signed by William.

You can view the complete document for the scenario described in this article in the attachment at the bottom of this page.

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