Electronic signatures in PC JIMS

KB article ID:5003 (permalink): available at support.goodinassociates.com/5003

Judges and Circuit Clerks can digitally sign documents in PC JIMS Imaging.

How to apply a signature to a document

A document has to be​ in PDF format, and​ in​ PC JIMS​ Imaging​. If ​you're working with a Notice Generation document, it will have to be created and exported to Imaging, first.


Once a document is in Imaging​,​ follow these steps:

  1. Open the document in Imaging.

  2. Right click on the document.

  • Select Add Annotation\Signature (or Signature and date) [this is how judges digitally sign documents]

    • Left click approximately where you want the signature.

    • Enter the User ID and password.

    • Press Login.

  • Alternately, select Add Annotation\Signature Pad [this is how a litigants digitally sign documents]

    • Left click approximately where you want the signature.

    • An "Enter signature" screen ​will ​appear.

    • Sign and date on the signature​ ​pad. It will display on the screen.

    • Press Save.

  1. The signature will be added to the document for ​you ​to resize or move ​as needed.

  2. The ​document needs to be saved to save the signature to ​it​. Note that the signature is not permanent until the user makes all annotations permanent.

Note: Judge signatures require an added ​layer of authentication​ when signing documents. As such, their signature needs to be associated in advance with their PC JIMS User ID. It's then applied to documents using the above method requiring a User ID and password. 

How to capture a signature for use in PC JIMS

Judge signatures can be scanned and saved to a file in advance, or they can be captured using a signature pad.

  1. Get into Imaging.

  2. Go to Technical/Signatures.

  3. Go to File/New.

  4. Choose the User ID to be associated with the signature in the Select User window.

  5. Select JUDGE in the User Role window when working with a judge. Select CIRCUIT CLERK in the User Role window when working with the Circuit Clerk.

  6. To load a scanned signature (see below for scanning instructions), click on the folder icon to the far right of 'Upload signature." Browse to the saved signature file and select it.

  7. To use a signature pad, click on the pen-on-paper icon to the far right of 'Upload signature." Sign the signature pad. Click 'Save' on the Edit Signature screen, or 'Clear,' then sign again. (The signature may look bad on the screen, but it will look the same as it looks on the signature pad when saved.)

  8. Click Save.

  9. The selected signature will be associated with the selected PC JIMS User ID and securely stored in the iSeries.


TOPAZ signature pads

Goodin Associates elected to work with ​TOPAZ Systems signature pad​s because this brand creates just one DLL which works with most of their models. While we tested on a T-LBK-462-HSB-R, PC JIMS relies only on the signature capture functionality of these signature pads, and not on any of the company's supplemental software. According to TOPAZ, any of their signature pads should work with PC JIMS. They're plug and play: just plug it into your PC and try it using the above instructions. If you have one that does not work, it may be defective or obsolete. Contact TOPAZ for support.

Scanning signatures

When using a signature pad isn't an option, using a scanner is the next best thing. Provided a high-quality scan of a judge's signature, GAL can ready it for a judge to digitally sign documents in Imaging.

  1. Judge signs a blank piece of white paper. Signature needs to be clear and legible.
  2. Load the paper into scanner.
  3. On your PC, go to Control Panel/Devices and Printers.
  4. Right-click on the scanner icon, and select "Start scan". (You may have to double-click on the scanner icon to first open its scanner software.)
    1. Configure the output settings for the scanner:
      1. Output type should be JPG. TIFF and BMP should be used only if JPG is not an option.
      2. Set the Resolution to a minimum to 150 DPI, and preferably 300 DPI.
      3. Note (or set) the destination folder and file name.
    2. Scan the signature page.
  5. Do not attempt to tweak, modify or crop the scanned document. GAL will handle that.
  6. Call GAL to determine the best method for delivering the signature to us for processing. Ask for Kurt.

A ​​word on electronic signatures​

While some courts want to start using digital signatures now, ​the rules for electronic signature​s​ ​(as of this write-up) are ​still being decided​. W​e​​ made ​this feature available to accommodate the want, but​ we​ may have to make changes to it once ​the ​rules for electronic signatures​ get defined​.​

​For questions pertaining to digital signature standards, please contact the AOIC.

For a review of the 2014 standards governing the use of electronic signatures, see: http://illinoiscourts.gov/SupremeCourt/Policies/Pdf/Electronic_Filing_Standards.pdf