Spain's New Electronic Signature Act

On March 20th, 2004, a new Electronic Signature Act (Law 59/2003 on Electronic Signature, dated December 19th) entered into force in Spain. The new act replaced the legal regime set forth by Royal Decree 14/1999. Both legal texts are based on the principles set out by the EC Directive No. 1999/93, which aimed at creating a harmonized legal environment that may encourage the use of this kind of technology. A comparison between the former and the new electronic signature law follows. We also included a brief description of the new electronic signature law.

The following questions have been addressed in this article:

Is the new Electronic Signature Act similar to Royal Decree 14/1999?
What is the main difference between the Royal Decree 14/1999 and the New Electronic Signature Act?
What are the new concepts introduced by the New Electronic Signature Act?
To what type of transactions does the Electronic Signature Act applies?

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