You may have read in the news recently about a woman who was unaware she had been divorced for 12 years as her husband forged her signature on the divorce documents. Or the bank employee who forged a signature causing a businessman to go bankrupt. The headlines are often peppered with cases of corporate fraud, divorce settlements or contested wills where it is subsequently proven that documents were not signed by the correct person. If these news items have got you questioning the validity of a signature on an important document, then you need to know what to do if you think your signature has been forged.
When might you encounter a forged signature?
There are many documents that during the course of your life you will need to sign in order to make them legal or valid. These might include wills, divorce documents, mortgage papers or loan agreements. The act of signing your name on a document signifies that you agree with the information contained within it, or that in the case of witnessing a signature, that you agree the intended person has signed the document.
When a document relating to two parties is signed it is legally binding and can be upheld in court, which is why it is so important to act quickly if you feel a signature on a document pertaining to you or your property has been forged.
What if someone forges your signature?
The first thing you should do is to go to the police. Will forgery, or a fraudulent signature on any legal document is a crime and should be reported. Read our blog on what to do if someone forges your signature.
If you cannot remember signing a document or are presented with copies of a document or proof of a signature that does not look like yours, someone may have fraudulently signed on your behalf and may therefore be agreeing with something that goes against your wishes.
In order to prove this is the case you may need to get in touch with our handwriting experts – Kate and Steve – who are highly experienced in forensic signature analysis. We can use our expertise and specialist equipment to compare your specimen signatures with the disputed signatures.
To find out more about the signature examinations we offer or the types of specimen signatures we require to carry out an analysis please click here or call us on 0121 796 5355 to discuss your requirements.