Signing on the dotted line—'I Accept' button constitutes a signature under Consumer Credit Act 1974

Signing on the dotted line—'I Accept' button constitutes a signature under Consumer Credit Act 1974

Businesses can breathe a sigh of relief after the High Court upholds the principle that electronic signatures are acceptable for the purpose of consumer credit legislation.

Original news

Bassano v Toft and others [2014] All ER (D) 36 (Mar), [2014] EWHC 377 (QB)

The first and third defendants (Mr Toft and Borro Loan Ltd) sought to recoup loans to the claimant, Ms Bassano, based on the security of her musical instrument. Ms Bassano disputed the claims on the basis that the loan was not enforceable by reference to provisions of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 (CCA 1974) in relation to the first defendant and that the third defendant's loan had not been validly executed. The Queen's Bench Division decided that both defendants were entitled to recoup the monies loaned.

What were the facts of the case?

Ms Bassano, was a professional musician, owning a valuable viola. Between 2009 and 2011 she used the viola as security to obtain loans from the defendants. Mr Toft and Borro brought proceedings to enforce repayment of the loans, in part against the proceeds of the sale of the viola. The court had to decide the following issues:

  1. Mr Toft's claim for a money judgment for repayment of his loan plus interest
  2. Borro's claim for a money judgment to enforce repayment of its loan plus interest
  3. Borro's claim to a priority security interest in the proceeds of the sale of the viola by virtue of his position as pledgee (for details on this part of the claim, see This week's essentials for Banking & Finance—6 March 2014 )

What did the court decide?

Borro’s claim

Ms Bassano claimed that the agreement was not properly executed because it was not executed in a way that complied with CCA 1974 as Ms Bassano did not sign it. CCA 1974,

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