The electronic signature in Puerto Rico

The current legislation in Puerto Rico is Ley 359 de 2004, on the Electronic Signature. Unlike most Latin American countries, Puerto Rican laws are more similar to United States than to Spain, and therefore to European laws as it is part of the U.S. Commonwealth. According to this law, the electronic signature is as valid as the handwritten signature, though it must meet the following requirements:

  1. It must be identified to a natural or legal person, called the signatory.
  2. It shall be created with data that the signatory keeps under his sole control, so that it is uniquely and individually linked to the signatory.
  3. Authenticate the signatory as the author of any message, document or operation generated or transmitted via electronic means to which the signature is attached.
  4. One of the purposes of the legal requirement for the signature is to provide security for the integrity of the information to which it relates, so that any alteration of that information after completion of the signature can be detected.
  5. To be a valid Electronic Signature Certificate and issued by an authorized valid Certification Authority.

In Puerto Rico, electronic signatures are recognized, which would be equivalent to advanced electronic signatures, though it does not refer to simple electronic signatures.