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Electronic Signatures

1 February 2018

Photo: Wellington Foreshore by Kate Alderton

Under New Zealand law, most transactions, contracts, and agreements can be completed and signed electronically - this includes Residential Tenancy Agreements and other tenancy-related documents and forms.

What the law says

In most circumstances when a signature is legally required, New Zealand law allows that signature to be electronic. In such circumstances, an electronic signature is just as valid as a written or hard-copy signature and creates a legally-binding contract or agreement in the same way.

The relevant legislation confirming the validity of electronic signatures is s 226(1) of the Contract and Commercial Law Act 2017 :

Section 226: Legal requirement for signature

(1) A legal requirement for a met by means of an electronic signature if the electronic signature—
(a) adequately identifies the signatory and adequately indicates the signatory’s approval of the information to which the signature relates; and
(b) is as reliable as is appropriate given the purpose for which, and the circumstances in which, the signature is required.

What the law means

The effect of s 226 is that a Residential Tenancy Agreement can be signed electronically by a landlord and tenant, provided that the signature:

  1. Adequately identifies the landlord and/or tenant signing.
  2. Adequately indicates that the landlord and/or tenant approves of the tenancy agreement.
  3. Is reliable for the purposes of indicating agreement to a tenancy agreement.

myRent’s electronic signature tool for tenancy agreements and other tenancy-related forms and documents meets these legal requirements:

  1. myRent’s signature tool allows landlords and tenants to write their signature on a screen with a mouse or trackpad in a way very similar to writing on paper.
  2. myRent’s signature tool is presented in a way that clearly shows landlords and tenants what they are agreeing to in providing their signature.
  3. myRent’s signature tool is reliable in providing a means to sign an agreement that is secure and accessible only to the person entitled to sign the agreement.

What are the benefits of electronic signatures?

Electronic signatures provide several important benefits to landlords and tenants:


Electronic signatures are just as secure as handwritten signatures, and in some cases may be even more secure. Only the landlord or tenant have access to their account to provide the necessary signatures. Your agreements and documents, including the signatures, are securely stored on myRent’s industry-standard servers and are communicated through encrypted connections.


Electronic signatures mean you can complete all your tenancy documents and forms electronically and take advantage of myRent’s pre-filled document services. This means you simply enter the necessary information for the agreement or form, provide your electronic signature, and then the form is completed and ready to be sent to anyone who needs it. This saves the tedious process of downloading, completing, printing, signing, scanning, uploading, and sending that is required for hard-copy, written signatures.

Easy Storage

Electronic signatures make document storage a breeze. Create, complete, sign, send, and store your important tenancy documents all in one place. This saves you the hassle of printing, sending, scanning and storing multiple versions of the same documents.

Save the Planet!

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The information contained in this article is exclusively for promotional purposes. It does not in any way constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as the basis for any legal action or contractual dealings. The information is not, and does not attempt to be, a comprehensive account of the relevant law in New Zealand. If you require legal advice you should seek independent legal counsel. does not accept any liability that may arise from the use of this information.

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