Assemblyman TROY SINGLETON
District 7 (Burlington)
Assemblyman BENJIE E. WIMBERLY
District 35 (Bergen and Passaic)
Assemblyman JAY WEBBER
District 26 (Essex, Morris and Passaic)
Assemblywoman LINDA STENDER
District 22 (Middlesex, Somerset and Union)
Assemblywoman Handlin, Assemblyman Diegnan, Senators Lesniak and Scutari
Clarifies that the “Uniform Electronic Transactions Act” applies to real estate transactions.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
An Act concerning certain electronic transactions and amending P.L.2001, c.116.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. Section 2 of P.L.2001, c.116 (C.12A:12-2) is amended to read as follows:
2. As used in this act:
"Agreement" means the bargain of the parties in fact, as found in their language or inferred from other circumstances, and from rules, regulations and procedures given the effect of agreements under laws otherwise applicable to a particular transaction.
"Automated transaction" means a transaction conducted or performed, in whole or in part, by electronic means or electronic records, in which the acts or records of one or both parties are not reviewed by an individual in the ordinary course in forming a contract, performing under an existing contract or fulfilling an obligation required by the transaction.
"Computer program" means a set of statements or instructions to be used directly or indirectly in an information processing system in order to bring about a certain result.
"Contract" means the total legal obligation resulting from the parties' agreement as affected by this act and other applicable law.
"Electronic" means relating to technology having [an] electrical, digital, magnetic, wireless, optical, electromagnetic or similar capabilities.
"Electronic agent" means a computer program or an electronic or other automated means used independently to initiate an action or respond to electronic records or performances in whole or in part, without review or action by an individual.
"Electronic record" means a record created, generated, sent, communicated, received or stored by electronic means.
"Electronic signature" means an electronic sound, symbol, or process attached to or logically associated with a record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record.
"Governmental agency" means an executive, legislative or judicial agency, department, board, commission, authority, institution or instrumentality of the federal government or of a state or of a county, municipality, or other political subdivision of a state.
"Information" means data, text, images, sounds, codes, computer programs, software, databases or the like.
"Information processing system" means an electronic system for creating, generating, sending, receiving, storing, displaying or processing information.
"Person" means an individual, corporation, business trust, estate, trust, partnership, limited liability company, association, joint venture, governmental agency, public corporation, or any other legal or commercial entity.
"Record" means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in perceivable form.
"Security procedure" means a procedure employed for the purpose of verifying that an electronic signature, record or performance is that of a specific person or for detecting changes or errors in the information in an electronic record. The term includes a procedure that requires the use of algorithms or other codes, identifying words or numbers, encryption, callback or other acknowledgment procedures.
"State" means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. The term includes an Indian tribe or band, or Alaskan native village, which is recognized by a federal law or formally acknowledged by a state.
"Transaction" means an action or set of actions occurring between two or more persons relating to the conduct of business, commercial or governmental affairs, including the sale, lease, exchange or other disposition of any interest in real property, or any combination thereof.
(cf: P.L.2001, c.116, s.2)
2. This act shall take effect immediately.
This bill clarifies that the “Uniform Electronic Transactions Act,” P.L.2001, c.116 (C.12A:12-1 et seq.), (UETA) applies to real estate transactions. In 2001, the State adopted the UETA, which was proposed by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws based on the federal "Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act," Pub.L. 106-229, 114 Stat. 464 (2000), popularly known as "federal E-Sign."
The “federal E-sign” act, and the State UETA, are intended to facilitate the use of electronic records and signatures in commerce by ensuring the validity and legal effect of contracts entered into electronically. Under the “federal E-sign” act, the definition of “transaction” specifically includes the sale, lease, exchange or other disposition of any interest in real property, or any combination thereof. This bill would amend the State UETA to include similar language.