Require a reason for signature

The Adobe Acrobat Sign "Signing Reasons" feature is available for the enterprise and business levels of service.

The Signing Reasons feature allows the signer to provide the reason they are signing the agreement. This type of information is required in some work processes (eg: Title 21 CFR part 11).

  • Reasons can be required or optional.
  • The Reason field can be applied to Electronic or Digital signature fields.
    • Initial fields are not included.
  • Reasons can be selected from a pre-defined list created by the Acrobat Sign admin, or entered into a free-form text field. 

How it's used

When Signing Reasons are enabled, the signer is asked to provide a reason for applying their signature immediately after they type, draw or upload their signature image. The signature is displayed in a new panel with either:

  • An open text field that can accept a custom reason from the signer
Provide a custom reason

  • A drop-down list of acceptable reasons (as defined in Acrobat Sign)
Select a reason from the provided list


If both options are enabled, then the pick-list will have a line item to allow the custom reason entry (as seen above)


Once the reason is provided, the signer clicks OK, and the form filling/signature process continues as normal.

Both options produce a signature block that shows the signature, with the reason displayed to the right:

Custom reason example

Listed reason example


And both options list the reason in the report CSV for the agreement:

Signing reason in the report csv file

Configuration options

There are four selectable options in terms of capturing the signing reason.

The first two indicate if a reason should be allowed in the signature process. Electronic and Digital signatures are enabled discretely:

  • Allow signers to provide a signing reason for e-signature workflows - Applies the reason field to electronic signature fields
  • Allow signers to provide a signing reason for cloud-based digital signature workflows - Applies the reason field to digital signature fields


Allowing a signature does not require a reason from the signer.

However, if you allow for the signature reason, you must either define a list of reasons or allow a custom reason to be entered.


The second two settings provide control over the reasons applied:

  • Require signers to provide a signing reason - When enabled, all signers are required to provide a reason (internal and external signers)
  • Allow signers to provide their custom signing reason - Allows the signer to enter their own reason into a text field
    • If no pre-defined list of reasons is established, this setting must be enabled when signing reasons are allowed
Signing reason configurable options


Below the selectable options is the list of defined reasons.

If custom reasons are not allowed, this list must have at least one entry.


To add a new reason, click the plus icon 

Add a reason interface


An overlay displays the Create dialogue box, allowing you to configure the reason.  There are three elements to the reason:

  • Signing reason name - The nominal name of the reason record. 
    • Provided to facilitate sorting of reasons that may span various languages
  • Signing reason text - This is the actual text that is inserted into the signature and audit report. 
    • The reason text is limited to 128 characters or less
    • The signer will see the full text in the selection window
  • Language - Only reasons that have a matching Language value for the signer's environment are presented as options.  If you send agreements using the French locale, then only the reasons flagged for the French language will be selectable
    • If the signer is using a locale that has no pre-defined Reason match, a custom reason is accepted


Once the reason is properly configured, click Save.

The reason becomes available for all signers immediately.

Interface to provide the reason details


To Edit or Delete a reason from the list, single click the reason to select it.

The options to Edit or Delete appear in the upper-left of the section:

Edit and Delete option when a reason is selected in the UI

How to enable or disable

The Signing Reasons feature can be enabled at the Account level by the Acrobat Sign Account Admin.

Group level settings are permitted and will override the Account level values. 


To access the options, navigate to: Account Settings > Bio-Pharma Settings

Navigate to the Bio-Pharma tab to find the Signing Reasons controls

Things to keep in mind...

  • Signature reasons work with digital and electronic signature fields.
    • Each signer can have only one digital signature field and multiple electronic signature fields.
  • Signature reasons do not apply when only a Stamp is used as a signature.


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