A new digital mortgage service is to be launched by HM Land Registry (HMLR) in 2018 that will enable borrowers to sign mortgage deeds digitally.

digital-signature

This should speed up the remortgage process and improve the customer experience.

The service was due to launch at the end of 2017 but is now set for “later in 2018”.

A new liability risk arises with this service because HMLR will certify the identity of a borrower when that person provides a digital signature in advance of registration. However, the risk of the new liability occurring is considered low.

The borrower’s identity is verified through GOV.UK Verify combined with HMLR’s independent security processes, which should reduce the overall risk of fraud.

To date GOV.UK Verify says it has not identified a single example of fraud despite in excess of 1.25 million citizens’ accounts having been created using the GOV.UK Verify service.

As with the existing indemnity, any costs incurred from this extension will be covered by HMLR’s resources as a trading fund.

Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said that subject to no objections being received, he will authorise the proposal to undertake contingent liability for the digital mortgage service, after the usual 14 parliamentary sitting days.

Tommy Petrogiannis, president of eSignLive by VASCO, welcomed the news and commented: “It’s great to see the drive for a completely digital mortgage process. There has been a demand for some time now but many industry stakeholders have been reluctant to replace paper, raising concerns about compliance and security.

“However, best-in-class e-signature solutions already address these concerns though built-in workflow, presentation and delivery rules, and include authentication features to ensure the integrity of the signing process and the underlying document.

“Best of all, e-signature solutions enable the entire mortgage process to stay digital, rather than just enabling e-signing of the mortgage deed.”

Article originally posted by Mortgage Finance Gazette