QES & Competition Law – European Commission to require electronic signatures from 1st September, 2023

11. July 2023

To further simplify merger control procedures and in line with its overall digital strategy, the European Commission has published a number of revised legal texts, including one that will make electronic transmission of electronically signed documents the default method from 1 September 2023. Read on to find out which e-signature solution law firms are equipping themselves with now, and what they need to be aware of.

Click here to place your order – get your Cloud QES now!

EU Digital Strategy: Expanding opportunities for signature services

After the Unified Patent Court recently made the use of electronic signature products mandatory, giving a boost to qualified e-signatures beyond the EU’s borders, the European Commission is now following suit. In the wake of the EC Merger Regulation, several texts have been re-published – one of which lays down formal requirements and technical specifications. giving qualified electronic signatures  special status in the areas of competition and antitrust law.


QES now the rule, not the exception

As of 1.9.2023, documents can only be sent in electronic form via EU Send (also known as eTrustEx), a web-based platform for secure data exchange between the Commission’s GD COMP and external stakeholders. Documents must be provided with a qualified electronic signature (QES) to ensure authenticity and integrity – this is a signature that can only be provided by certain providers and replaces the handwritten signature throughout the EU.

TRUST2GO suitable signature product

We have taken a closer look at the requirements for you. Unlike the Unified Patent Court, DG Competition does not require specific hardware, does not distinguish between authentication and signature certificates, and does not maintain its own list of providers. The requirements for the signature solution and the technical specifications are very precise and are fully met by our Cloud TRUST2GO®.

Goodbye “Wet ink” signature

With TRUST2GO, you can electronically sign your PDF files in a way that replaces the written form; beyond competition law and eTrustEx, there are numerous exciting applications – no limits to your personal digitisation strategy!

Applicability of the new form requirements








How do I get my QES electronic signature?

The easiest way to request individual accounts is here. In case of larger demand (10 signers or more), please contact us early to prepare a batch order.

You will then be invited by mail to participate in a video identification via our German provider- qualified signatures can only be provided after an identity check to prevent misuse.

You can complete the video call Monday through Sunday, 7:00 am to 10:00 pm Berlin Time without an appointment. Please have a valid passport or ID card ready and provide adequate lighting.

Following the successful identification, we will notify you about the activation. The solution is 100% cloud-based – so waiting for mail, bulky card readers, and compatibility issues don’t have to be a headache.

I am a US citizen, resident in Germany, our office is in Stockholm and I currently reside in Amsterdam…

…Our signature certificates are issued on the basis of the EU eIDAS regulation and are not restricted to certain citizenships. The European Commission documents we analysed in this case also remind of an important general principle: thanks to the cross-border recognition of qualified trust services, you are not limited to your place of business when choosing your provider. It doesn’t matter where you live or where you are: the service is cloud-based and doesn’t need to be delivered by post; video identification supports ID documents from over 100 countries. Click here for the latest list

I already have a GLOBALTRUST UPC bundle.

Then you do not need to request a separate TRUST2GO account. A qualified electronic signature is already included in your bundle. Hint: Many of our existing customers only obtained an authentication token without signature properties. In this case, you need to upgrade – If you are unsure, please contact us at any time.

How can I check that my signature will be accepted by the Commission?

For signed documents, the following test page is available for demo purposes
You can download a signed test document here

For signature certificate the following test page is available for demo purposes
You can download a certificate here

Test service of the TKK/RTR (supervisory authorities for signature services established according to eIDAS-VO): https://www.rtr.at/TKP/was_wir_tun/vertrauensdienste/Signatur/signaturpruefung/Pruefung.de.html

Our entry on the list of approved trust service providers:

Click here to place your order – get your Cloud QES now!

How can we get in touch with you?

Contact our team: +43 1 532 0 944

Our employees are available for an obligation-free consultation.

Availability: Mon-Fri 9:00-17:00

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