How to Electronically Sign PDF Documents without Printing and Scanning in Windows

Last Updated on April 14, 2020 by Next Century

If you have been emailed a PDF document and you need to sign it and send it back.  Of course you could print out the document, sign it, and then scan it back in and email it. But there’s a better, faster way.

Microsoft Windows – Adobe Reader DC

To sign a document using Adobe Reader, follow these steps:

  • First open the PDF document in the Adobe Acrobat Reader DC application

  • Click the Fill & Sign button in the right pane

  • Click the Sign button on the toolbar and select Add Signature to add your signature to Adobe Acrobat Reader DC

    You can create a signature in one of three ways. By default, Adobe Reader selects “Type” so you can type your name and have it converted to a signature but this won’t look like your real signature, so I would not recommend this option.

    Instead, you will probably want to select Draw and then draw your signature using your mouse or a touch screen. You can also select “Image” if you would like to sign a piece of paper, scan it with a scanner, and then add your written signature to Adobe Reader. (Yes, this requires scanning, but you only have to do this once, after which you can use that signature on any documents you electronically sign in the future.)

  • After creating a signature, click Apply to apply it to the document. Leave Save Signature checked and you can quickly add this signature in the future.

  • Position your signature where you want it with your mouse and click to apply it. If you chose to save your signature, you will find it easily accessible in the Sign menu in the future.

  • To save your signed PDF document, click File > Save and select a location for the file

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