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Legislature encourages electronic commerce. (State Beat: Vermont).

The Vermont Legislature has passed HB 148, which would enact a version of the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act supporting the use of electronic records and signatures.

The bill's passage will enhance insurers' ability to conduct the business of insurance electronically, according to the Alliance of American Insurers. "This increased ease of operation will result in certain cost savings and conveniences that will benefit consumers and insurers, alike," said Frank O'Brien, vice president of the alliance's New England Region.

The bill also includes provisions to prevent the application of the Uniform Computer Information Transactions Act. The alliance supported the "UCITA bomb shelter" provision, saying that it would prevent abuses by software companies in negotiating software licenses.

UETA was developed in 1999 by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. It assures that electronic records and signatures are not found to be invalid merely because they are in electronic form. UETA does not require the use electronic records or signatures, nor does it mandate the type of technology used to transmit the signature.

Once the bill is signed, Vermont will join Iowa, North Carolina, and West Virginia as states with UCITA bomb shelter legislation. About 40 states have a version of UETA in place to encourage use of electronic records and signatures.

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Geographic Code:1U1VT
Date:Jul 1, 2003
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