Are electronic signatures legal in Cameroon?


Electronic Signature has been legally recognised in Cameroon since 2010, since passing the OHADA Uniform Act on General Commercial Law and later by the Laws on Cyber Security and Cyber Criminality and the Law on Electronic Communication.

Giving businesses the option to use them whilst trading.

Yes, e-signatures are court admissible

Each country has it’s own regulations that determine whether an electronic signature is seen as legal or not. So, as long as your electronic signature adheres to these, a signature won’t be rejected simply for not being handwritten.

Yes, e-signatures can be used in business

Whilst 100% legal; there are exceptions for very specific types of transactions. It is still up to the discretion of the independent user, or governing body, whether they are used or not. As each business needs are different and the agreements themselves may vary. We always advise you to speak with an authority within your businesses category.

Legal Model

Cameroon’s legal model is a tiered one. This means that Qualified Electronic Signature are seen as a legal type of e-signature. This doesn’t mean that a non-QES e-Signature can’t be submitted in court, but it will need additional evidence to support it.

Legal Classification

Cameroon is a bijural system with the English Common Law operating in the two regions: North West and South West. The French Civil Law operates in eight regions: Adamaoua, Centre, East, Far North, Littoral, North, West and South.

For more information see here and here.

Full Summary

Cameroon law highlights that a traditional signature isn’t necessarily required for a valid contract – contracts are considered valid if legally able individuals reach an agreement (this can be by agreeing verbally, electronically or by physically signing – Cameroon Civil Code; The Organisation pour l’Harmonisation en Afrique du Droit des Affaires (OHADA) Uniform Act on General Commercial Law). And The Laws on Electronic Commerce and Cyber Security and Cyber Criminality say that contracts can’t be refused for simply being electronic. However, these contracts may have to be supported in court with extra evidence. Electronic signature solutions can be used to provide these electronic documents, under Section 17 of the Law on Cyber Security and Cyber Criminality.