Non-bank loans focus mainly on one distribution channel, which is the Internet. Although it is still possible to use stationary points, and one of the largest lenders, such as Procident or CreditOn, have their offices spread all over the country, the largest group of borrowers prefers to obtain financing completely online. Contrary to appearances, this is the easiest and fastest way to get extra cash for emergency expenses. What may suspend borrowers from this kind of commitment is the concern for transaction security and legal regulation that would safeguard the legality of the loan. Doubts often relate to the legal force of the loan agreement, which we have no chance to sign in person. So let’s dispel them.
Is the online contract valid?
Rules applicable to the conclusion of contracts are contained in the First Book of the Civil Code. He indicates that the contract is a consistent statement of intentions of both parties, and this must be a statement that leaves no doubt as to interpretation. It can be expressed by any behavior that sufficiently reveals this will. The contract is concluded when both parties express this will. It does not have to be signed in person – it is also acceptable and legally identical to conclude such an agreement electronically, via the Internet.
It is important, however, that the loan agreement is saved on a data carrier that allows it to be reproduced later – e.g. on a computer. It is, however, unacceptable that the contract be saved using a non-standard file format that the borrower is unlikely to be able to open. For this reason, the loan company sends contracts in PDF format.
Electronic signature in the loan agreement
The safest way to sign a loan agreement via the Internet is approval of this document by a qualified electronic signature. However, this is not available to everyone – to be able to make an electronic signature, you must have the appropriate device and a certified signature assigned to one person only. To this end, you must purchase equipment and a signature authenticity certificate in a company that has the appropriate approval by the Ministry of Digitization. It is not only widely available, but also cheap – such a set can cost up to several hundred dollars. That is why confirmation of the loan agreement by a qualified electronic signature is not required, although many loan companies, such as Livus, PapiSmiles, Rampida Money and Procident, allow this possibility.
Power of attorney to sign the contract
This is one of the frequently practiced ways to sign a loan agreement online. Most often, when submitting an application, we are required to indicate consent to sign the loan agreement by someone else on our behalf. Loan companies (eg Wonga) have one person who signs loan agreements on behalf of all borrowers. You don’t have to worry about this – the scope of this power of attorney is one-off and strictly defined as to the scope. Therefore, it will not be used for any other purpose – it can only be used to sign a specific contract (marked with a number) and only in the wording in which it was sent to the borrower.
Written form of the loan agreement
A very large proportion of lenders make it possible to sign a paper contract. For this purpose, of course, there is no need to sign it at the customer service point (after such usually there is simply no) or at the lender’s office. The borrower only needs to print a PDF file sent by the loan company, sign it, and then send it back to the address provided. It should be remembered, however, that the contract begins as soon as it is confirmed electronically, and not when the lender receives the signed document.
Even if the borrower fails to do so, the contract will continue to apply and we will have to reckon with the fact that we will have to comply with it by law. The borrower must also remember that the next loan from the same company is unlikely to be granted to him. Most often in such a case, electronic confirmation is also necessary, sometimes by means of an SMS code sent by the lender to the number that was entered in the loan application.
The contract was also personally signed in online loans
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It is not true that we can personally sign the loan agreement only at a stationary outlet. For some online loans, it is possible to sign a paper contract – this will be the case with installment loans rather than payday loans. Most often, signing the contract in this way will take place with loans paid by the GIRO check or loans with home service. In the case of the former, available, among others, at Enough Finances or Super Gross, the contract is sent by courier, and the borrower signs it only after identifying himself with his identity card.
In a situation where we decide on a loan with a home service (e.g. at Procident), all formalities are handled by a company employee, so it is clear that in this way the loan agreement will also be signed. However, with one or the other type of loan, we cannot count on the fact that we will receive the money in 15 minutes – usually it must be at least 24 hours from applying.
Is the online loan agreement secure?
The loan agreement should be read at least twice – the first time it is good to familiarize yourself with its template, while the second reading should take place before its final signing, personal or electronic. In both versions it is exactly the same contract, regulated by the same provisions (in particular by the Consumer Credit Act of 2011) and having the same legal force. They equally protect the borrower’s interests and guarantee him the same rights.