An Act to Clarify Signature Requirements on Certain Legal Documents
Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:
Sec. 1. 18-A MRSA §5-509 is enacted to read:
Notwithstanding any law validating electronic or digital signatures, signatures on a durable power of attorney must be made in person and not by electronic means.
Sec. 2. 18-A MRSA §5-802, sub-§(b), as enacted by PL 1995, c. 378, Pt. A, §1, is amended to read:
(b) An adult or emancipated minor with capacity may execute a power of attorney for health care, which may authorize the agent to make any health-care decision the principal could have made while having capacity. The power must be in writing and signed by the principal and 2 witnesses. Notwithstanding any law validating electronic or digital signatures, signatures of the principal and witnesses must be made in person and not by electronic means. The power remains in effect notwithstanding the principal's later incapacity and may include individual instructions. Unless related to the principal by blood, marriage or adoption, an agent may not be an owner, operator or employee of a residential long-term health-care institution at which the principal is receiving care.
Sec. 3. 33 MRSA c. 7, sub-c. III-A is enacted to read:
VALIDITY OF SIGNATURES
§331. Electronic signatures not valid on certain real property documents
Notwithstanding any law validating electronic or digital signatures, an electronic signature, digital signature or other signature effected by electronic means is not recognized under the law of this State as a valid, enforceable signature on any deed, mortgage or other document, including but not limited to a document granting a power of attorney, purporting to affect title to real property.
Effective August 11, 2000, unless otherwise indicated.
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