Does a Printed Name Have the Same Effect as a Name Signed in Cursive?

Section 46 of the Condominium Act, 1998 (the Act) sets out the requirements for a meeting requisition from owners, and requires, among other things, that the requisition document be signed by at least 15% of the owners. In the recent case of Hogan v. MTCC 595, the Court was required to determine whether or not printed names were sufficient to constitute ‘signatures’ for the purposes of section 46 of the Act.

The Court decided that the printed names were sufficient to meet the signature requirement. The judge found that the printed names clearly and unequivocally conveyed the intention of each of the individuals named on the requisition. There is no requirement in the Act that a requisition be ‘signed’ in cursive writing, and there was no concern respecting the authenticity of the printed names (i.e. there was no allegation that someone other than the named individual had printed his/her name).

This case does not address the issue of whether or not other forms of signatures – such as electronic signatures – might also be acceptable as a signature on a requisition form. Although this has not been tested in Court, there may be room for the argument that a ‘signature’ requirement could be satisfied by an electronic signature or even email confirmation – as long as the electronic signature or correspondence reliably identifies the individual ‘signing’.