Blog: Industry Insights

Legal experts emphasize the importance of process evidence in e-signature solutions at LOMA conference

Creating trillions of dollars in revenues, life insurance is a massive industry. It’s also extremely complex, requiring compliance with a large number of stringent laws and constantly changing regulations that can vary from state to state, and certainly from country to country.

As the most selected e-signature vendor for the North American insurance market, Silanis is well versed in the various compliance issues that leading life and P&C insurers must consider when moving their transactions online.

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Silanis has participated in many of the learning events hosted by the Life Office Management Association (LOMA), the professional association for thousands of life insurance and financial companies around the world, and found them to be extremely beneficial.

So just last week, we were equally impressed when we attended LOMA’s Regulatory Compliance Exchange for the first time. The professional development event took place from March 30 to April 1 in Baltimore Maryland and was attended by nearly 200 life insurance legal and compliance experts.

One particular session we attended, entitled: Life Insurance in an Electronic Age was of particular interest to insurance companies who are interesting in implementing e-signature solutions.

During the session, Patrick Hatfield, a leading e-commerce lawyer and partner with the legal firm Locke, Lord, Bissell & Liddell gave a great overview of the legal and compliance issues affecting insurance companies and how they can reduce the risks associated with e-signature transactions.

To support his presentation, Mr. Hatfield included case studies on two life insurance companies who are using electronic processing to manage electronic applications and forms. These companies have not only improved customer service, but have mitigated the risk of being taking to court should a dispute arise thanks to the process evidence that an e-signature process management system provides.

Mr. Hatfield confirmed that not only are e-signatures legal, they are holding up better in court than traditional wet ink processes. To that end, however, he emphasized the importance of the e-signature solution being able to capture detailed and incontestable process evidence.

Thankfully, clients who do take a thorough and attentive approach to capturing evidence throughout the e-signing process will be rewarded with a lower than average number of law suits and court cases.
It’s a point reiterated in the article, Taking E-Signatures to Court, which is based on a Silanis webcast delivered in February 2010 by Greg Casamento, another partner at Locke, Lord, Bissell & Liddell and lawyer Frank Zacherl, partner at Shutts & Bowen.

When referring to the importance of process evidence, Mr. Zacherl cites the experience of one of his clients, who after five years of employing an e-signature process management system only saw 15 lawsuits filed. According to Mr. Zacherl: “Twelve of these plaintiffs immediately dropped their cases due to the persuasive electronic evidence that was captured by the client’s electronic signature system.” The other three were nearly ready to follow suite at the time of the webcast.

In other words, according to Mr. Hatfield and Mr. Zacherl, for insurers who want to move their transactions online, the proof—and the peace of mind—is in the process.

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