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Classification of Law

Civil Law

Peru's legal system is a mixture of Roman civil law and Anglo-American common law systems.  Civil law operates in areas such as family relations, property, succession, contract, and criminal law, while statutes and principles of common law origin are evident in such areas as constitutional law, procedure, corporations law, taxation, insurance, labour relations, banking and currency.

Civil law systems are based on concepts derived from old Roman law, distinguishable by their reliance on having a comprehensive set of rules and principles codified and easily accessible to both citizens and legal professionals. Codified laws are regularly revised to reflect the current environment, and have stronger emphasis in civil law countries than any precedent set by earlier court cases. Civil law countries cover more than 65% of world’s legal system, including the majority of continental Europe, Central and South America, the Middle East, Asia and Africa.

eSignature Legality Summary

Under Peruvian law, a written signature is not necessarily required for a valid contract - contracts are generally valid if legally competent parties reach an agreement, whether they agree verbally, electronically or in a physical paper document (article 143 of Civil Code). Articles 141, 141-A and 1374 of Peruvian Civil Code establish that contracts can be enforceable if they are concluded orally, in writing or electronically, thus, the enforceability of a contract cannot merely be denied because it was concluded electronically. To prove a valid contract, parties sometimes have to present evidence in court. Leading digital transaction management solutions can provide electronic records that are admissible in evidence under articles 233 and 234 of Peruvian Civil Procedure Code; however, it admits evidence to the contrary. Thus, in a trial the other party may produce evidence to challenge this electronic document, or some facts that contradict its validity may arise during the process. In this regard, the Judge will analyze on a case-by-case basis if the document provides sufficient evidence to prove the authenticity and validity of the contract.

Use Cases for Standard Electronic Signatures (SES)

Use cases where an SES is typically appropriate include:

  • HR documents such as Employment Contracts, benefits paperwork and other new employee onboarding processes
  • commercial agreements between corporate entities including NDAs, procurement documents, sales agreements
  • consumer agreements including new retail account opening documents
  • certain real estate documents including Lease agreements, certain purchase and sales contracts

Use Cases for Other Types of Electronic Signature (e.g. Digital Signature, AES[1], QES[2])

Use cases where an electronic signature other than SES may be required include:

  • QES - assignment of rights (Article 1207 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • QES - extrajudicial settlement (Article 1304 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • QES - movable property donation when its value exceeds a certain amount (Article 1624 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • QES - supply contracts when they are carried out as a liberality (Article 1605 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • QES - asset custody agreement (Article 1858 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • QES – bail (Article 1871 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • QES and notarization – partition of inheritance (Article 853 of Peruvian Civil Code)

Use Cases That Are Not Typically Appropriate for Electronic Signatures or Digital Transaction Management

Use cases that are specifically barred from digital or electronic processes or that include explicit requirements, such as handwritten (e.g. wet ink) signatures or formal notarial process that are not usually compatible with electronic signatures or digital transaction management.

  • Public deed - certain real estate agreements such as real property transfer, donation of estate property, but not but not lease contracts and other contracts related to real estate, which can be validly signed using any form of electronic signature[3] (Article 1625 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • Public deed - incorporation of civil legal entities and all acts that entail a change of company’s Bylaws (Article 5 of the General Law of Corporations; Article 81 and 100 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • Public deed - certain powers of attorney (Article 156 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • Public deed - mortgages (Article 1098 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • Public deed – antichresis (Article 1092 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • Public deed - all acts and/or agreements that are accessory to agreements executed by public deed
  • Public deed - family law documents such as wills, waiver of inheritance, establishment of family assets, partition of inheritance, marriage/prenuptial separation of goods (Article 675 and 496 of Peruvian Civil Code)
  • Public deed – certain wills (Article 696 of Peruvian Civil Code)

[1] An AES is an “advanced electronic signature”, a type of electronic signature that meets the following requirements: (a) it is uniquely linked to the signatory; (b) it is capable of identifying the signatory; (c) it is created using means that are under the signatory’s sole control; and (d) it is linked to other electronic data in such a way that any alteration to the said data can be detected.

[2] A QES is a specific digital signature implementation that has met the particular specifications of a government, including using a secure signature creation device, and been certified as ‘qualified’ by either that government or a party contracted by that government.

[3] However, for tax purposes, the Tax Authority may require the legalization (by a notary) of the lease agreements’ signatures

DISCLAIMER: The information on this site is for general information purposes only and is not intended to serve as legal advice. Laws governing electronic signature may change quickly, so DocuSign cannot guarantee that all the information on this site is current or correct. Should you have specific legal questions about any of the information on this site, you should consult with a licensed attorney in your area.

Last updated: November 01, 2019

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