ICAI has clarified vide announcement Dt. 13.04.2020 that a CA can sign audit report and other certificates using digital signature and same shall be admissible as evidence also under various acts. However generating UDIN for such certificates and reports would still be necessary.
The ICAI made the following statement:
“these Acts allow use of electronic signature for authentication of various documents. The IT Act 2000 also prescribes certain conditions to be fulfilled for an electronic signature to be considered as reliable.
Accordingly, the members of ICAI may use electronic signature for signing audit reports, all reports issued pursuant to any attestation engagement and certificates. However, the members need to ensure compliance with all the requirements relating to signature prescribed in the relevant law or regulation, Standards on Auditing and relevant announcements/ clarifications issued by ICAI on the matter including the requirement to mention UDIN.
Please note that the requirement to mention UDIN is applicable both for manually and digitally signed reports/certificates including certificates uploaded online.”
Thus now one can digitally sign the PDF audit report and there would be no requirement for manual signature.
You can read the full announcement HERE.
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