Editorial Director: Giusella Finocchiaro
Web Content Manager: Giulia Giapponesi

On 3 April 2014 the Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market (eIDAS) has been approved by the European Parliament.

Main principles of the Regulation are reported below (see also THIS POST).

One of the objectives of the Regulation is to remove existing barriers to the cross-border use of electronic identification means used in the Member States.

The principle of mutual recognition should apply if the notifying Member State’s electronic identification scheme meets the conditions of notification and the notification was published in the Official Journal of the European Union.

The Regulation reaffirms the principle that an electronic signature should not be denied legal effect on the grounds that it is in an electronic form or that it does not meet the requirements of the qualified electronic signature. However, it is for the national law to define the legal effect of electronic signatures, except for the requirement provided in the Regulation according to which a qualified electronic signature should have the equivalent legal effect of a handwritten signature.

The Regulation lays down conditions under which Member States shall recognise electronic identification means of natural and legal persons falling under a notified electronic identification scheme of another Member State, lays down rules for electronic trust services, in particular for electronic transactions and establishes a legal framework for electronic signatures, electronic seals, electronic time stamps, electronic documents, electronic registered delivery services and certificates services for website authentication.

The Regulation shall apply from 1 July 2016 and the Directive 1999/93/EC on electronic signatures is repealed with effect from 1 July 2016.

The workshop on electronic identification and trust services will be held in the context of the IAS project.

The European Commission adopted on 4 June 2012 a proposal for a “Regulation on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market” which includes electronic identification, electronic signatures, electronic seals, electronic time stamps, electronic documents and website authentication, as well as electronic delivery services.

The purpose of the workshop will be to collect and discuss feedback from stakeholders on the implementing needs relating to the forthcoming Regulation (delegated and implementing acts).

The workshop will take place on Wednesday 25 September 2013 (10:00-17:00) in the European Commission premises in Brussels (Auditorium, 1 Place Madou, 1210 Brussels, metro MADOU).

HERE you can download the final agenda for the workshop. For further background information about the IAS1 and IAS2 project, please visit www.iasproject.eu.


The Proposal Regulation by the European Parliament and the Council of electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions on the domestic market has recently been published and has begun its Parliamentary procedure.

Here is an outline of the main innovations provided for by the Proposal.

Legal instrument

The most important innovation is the legal instrument chosen, which is no longer a directive, but a regulation. This is to ensure the uniformity of the new regulation: it provides for a single EU “law” instead of 27 “ national laws”.

It is a fact that complexity and juridical uncertainty generate a cost which Europe must eliminate in order to present itself as a single market.

The same choice has been made for the recent proposal on the General Data Protection Regulation.

Thus, the aim is to create a genuine single market for digital services, removing the obstacles created by different national laws.


The main aim of the new proposal is to achieve legal and technical interoperability among the EU countries regarding questions of e-identification, e-authentication and e-signature.


Once again to encourage the development of the domestic market in the field of digital services.

Main innovations

1. Member States have the right to notify the European Commission of individual national electronic identification schemes. Once notification has been given and has been included on the list published by the Commission, it must be accepted by the other Member States (e.g. in public procurements).

2. The e-seal which constitutes a legal person’s signature has been introduced and must be considered as distinct from the e-signature which constitutes a natural person’s signature.

Therefore a company will be able to use an e-seal without the signature of the legal representative in order to guarantee the origin and integrity of e-documents.

3. The obligation to store information concerning e-identification and qualified e-signatures has been introduced.

4. Extensive reference to technical standards.

5. Explicit recognition of the e-signature on remote servers and on mobiles.


The non-discrimination principle of documents with e-signatures on the sole ground that they are in an electronic form has been reaffirmed.

The equivalence between qualified electronic signatures and handwritten signatures has been reaffirmed.

Voluntary agreements under private law (such as those between banks and their clients) are not subject to the provisions of the regulation.






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