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E-Signatures and Electronic Documentation in Real Estate Finance: ESIGN and UETA, Interplay With UCC

Enforceability, Authentication, and Admissibility; MERS and Transferability

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
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Conducted on Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will examine the legality of electronic signatures and digital documents generally, as well as recent developments in using eNotes and other electronic mortgage loan documentation. The panel will discuss the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce (ESIGN) Act, Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA), the MERS registry, and legal and practical issues, including the authentication of electronic signatures, transferability, and the admissibility of eNotes in litigation.


ENotes and other electronic loan documentation are now routine in residential mortgage lending and have gained more acceptance in commercial real estate lending. The industry is gradually moving toward the digital transformation of the mortgage lifecycle: application, closing, documentation, notarization, recording, and securitization.

ESIGN and UETA establish the legality of electronic records and signatures. MERS provides a platform for filing and tracking transfers of "control" of real estate notes from one party to another. However, electronic documents must comply with the UCC and recording statutes (which might require a paper original of the mortgage) and other applicable state laws.

If litigation ensues surrounding electronic loan documents, counsel must understand and address enforceability, authentication, and admissibility issues of electronic communications and e-signatures.

Listen as our authoritative panel discusses the use of eNotes and electronic loan documentation in commercial and residential mortgage lending. The program will also examine legal and practical issues regarding transferability, UCC perfection, the authentication of electronic signatures, and the admissibility of electronic communications and e-signatures in litigation.



  1. Introduction to ESIGN and UETA
  2. Electronic signatures: what are they?
  3. Remote notarization
  4. Pre-electronic signature law: ensuring the validity
  5. MERS: mortgage industry infrastructure established to support eNotes
  6. Creating and transferring ownership of eNotes
  7. Post-closing: the role of the document custodian for electronic files
  8. State law concerns: UCC and recordable instruments
  9. Admissibility of electronic signatures and documents into evidence


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What are the legal issues surrounding electronic signatures?
  • How do ESIGN, UETA, and the UCC interact, and how does this interaction impact various agreements of the loan package?
  • What is the role of MERS and the custodian, and can electronic mortgages be recorded?
  • What enforceability, authentication, and admissibility challenges do counsel face in litigation involving electronic loan documents?


Bond, Jane
Jane E. Bond

Managing Partner of Florida Litigation
McCalla Raymer Leibert Pierce

Ms. Bond has 30 years of litigation experience, with 24 years specifically devoted to business and real estate...  |  Read More

McGann-Horstkamp, Sharon
Sharon McGann-Horstkamp

General Counsel

Ms. Horstkamp has been a member of the MERS team since January 1997, where she developed the legal needs of the company...  |  Read More

Whitaker, David
David Whitaker

Of Counsel
DLA Piper

Mr. Whitaker advises traditional and emerging financial services companies, and commercial enterprises, in...  |  Read More

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