Page 20: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (October 2000)

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E-Commerce of law that changes the scope of UETA in a manner is inconsistent with or not permitted by E-SIGN, then the provi- sions of E-SIGN prevail. Even if a state has adopted UETA without modifica- tion, there are provisions of E-SIGN that are not included in UETA (such as cer- tain consumer protection provisions). In the absence of similar state law provi- sions, the E-SIGN provisions would apply even if the state has adopted


Adding another layer of complexity to this already complicated scenario is the fact that more than 30 states adopted

UETA before E-SIGN was enacted.

Therefore, each state law will have to be assessed for whether it is "consistent" or modified as permitted with E-SIGN before a decision can be made as to which law applies. Because E-SIGN creates a whole new area of federal con- tract law, there are no precedents to guide or help make those determina- tions. Legal disputes that trigger these issues will be operating in new, unchart- ed territory.

Electronic Record Keeping and

Reporting Could Bring Major

Regulatory Changes

Central to all regulatory programs, including those that govern the maritime industry, is the requirement to keep records and to report information to the regulator. E-SIGN now makes it possi- ble for such records to be kept and reported electronically. Contracts and other legal documents can also be pre- pared and maintained electronically.

E-SIGN requires records to be in a form that is capable of being retained and accurately reproduced for later ref- erence by all parties entitled to retain the contract or record. If this standard is not met, the legal effect, validity or enforce- ability of the electronic record may be denied.

Government agencies can still require the submission of records with specified standards or formats. Federal and state regulatory agencies may also require retention of a record in a tangible print- ed or paper form if there is a compelling governmental interest relating to law enforcement or national security. Other- wise, a federal or state regulatory agency has no authority to impose such a requirement.

Regulatory agencies can, however, use their rulemaking authority to establish "performance" standards for retention of contracts and records to assure their accuracy, integrity, and accessibility. -Corpus Christi - Sept. 11th —

The Lift Boat GULF ISLAND V, a 3-legged jack-up, sank off Corpus Christi, Texas. The vessel sank in 100 feet of water on to her port side with half her deckhouse beneath the sea bed.

Response <& Results:

After unsuccessful recovery attempts by others, Titan's salvage team removed the wreck and placed it on shore using the 500-ton sheerlegs Southern Hercules.

USA • P.O. Box 350465 • Ft. Lauderdale. FL 33335 UK " New Road, Newhaven • East Sussex • BN90HE BR " Rua Gen. Mena Barreto 708 Sao Paulo, Brasil

Tel: 954-929-5200 • Fax: 954-929-0102 Tel: ++44 (0) 1273 515-555 Fax: ++44(0)1273 515-456 Tel: ++55 11 887 9217 • Fax: ++55 11 887 2687

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In wood, New York USA • 1-800-645-7339

Fax:516-371-3134 • Web: • E-mail:

MMC (Europe) Ltd. • Fax:(01670)738789 • E-mail:







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Maritime Reporter

First published in 1881 Maritime Reporter is the world's largest audited circulation publication serving the global maritime industry.