Building waivers to capture consent with electronic signatures

Activity Messenger allows you to create waivers with electronic signatures. You can create waivers for adults and youth. Activity Messenger saves the signed waivers as PDF and sends the participant/parent a copy. We will keep a history of signed waivers for each of your clients. You can easily find and print signed waivers by name, email or mobile phone.

Waivers are standalone web pages available via a unique URL. They are branded to your organization. On your website you put a link to the waiver. Participants and parents can pre-fill the waivers by following that link. Activity Messenger waivers are responsive and work well on desktop, tablets and mobile.

A waiver has 6 visible parts that you can configure:

  • Your logo and an optional image
  • A youth or adult form
  • Your terms and conditions
  • A digital pad to capture an electronic signature
  • A checkbox to capture explicit consent for the participant/parent to receive promotional emails from you
  • A footer with your copyright notice, social vectors, and your address.

# Adult consent form

Adult waiver forms have fields for name, email and mobile phone number (optional).

# Youth consent form

Youth waiver forms have fields for the parent's name, email and mobile phone number (optional). In addition, the parent can add children by providing their name, gender and date of birth (to calculate their age).

# Electronic signature

Waiver forms have a digital pad to capture an electronic signature. The signatory can use the computer mouse, or their finger on touch screens (tablets and smartphones) to draw their signature. The signature is saved as an image and stored in a timestamped and read-only PDF document.

You may ask for a 2nd electronic signature. It can be made optional. Typically used for teenagers to co-sign with their parent.

Activity Messenger waivers are captured and stored in read-only PDF documents. Activity Messenger also timestamps and stores the respondent IP address, email and name. The PDF is also sent by email to the respondent for their own records. We also log the date and time the email is opened. The filled waivers are kept secured in the cloud and available indefinitely for your records. These measures are in place to ensure the maximum traceability in case you need to provide proof someone has filled the form.

# Mobile responsive

Over 60% of respondents fill in their forms and waivers on their smartphones. Activity Messenger has built its forms and waivers to be mobile first.

Forms and waivers are built to be legible and clear both on desktop and mobile devices. When viewed on a mobile device, the form/waiver is automatically resized. The font size has a minimum of 16 pixels; the recommended size as per Apple and Google best practices. Text and inputs are legible and easily accessible.

# Standard form fields

All forms have standard fields that can be toggled on or off.

The name and email fields are mandatory. The email is used to identify a respondent. The mobile field is always asked but can be optional.

You can customize the label of certain fields. For example the "Name" field can be changed to "Participant".

The Children field allows you to create child forms. You can require one child or allow the parent to specify multiple children.

You can ask the parent to provide information about a second parent.

Activity Messenger is a communication platform and has a complete unsubscribe mechanism for respondents to opt-out of marketing communication. You can include a checkbox for parents to opt-in to marketing emails and text messages.

You can require that the respondent digitally sign before submitting the form. This field is mandatory for waivers.

# Custom field

The Custom Field is a special question to provide context to a form. It allows you to segment respondents. For example it could be a list of interests for a newsletter signup, or a list of classes to pre-register to. You can toggle on the Custom Field for any type of form.

The Custom Field can be a drop-down, a list of checkboxes, a list of radio buttons or a text box. It always appears first in the form.

When you create a new message, you can filter against the Custom Field value. This allows you to segment respondents. For example, out of the 234 respondents, we can send an email to the 143 who have an interest in Youth Programs.

# Upload images

You can ask respondents to upload images. For example a photo of a document.

With the ability to text the form to parents, nothing is easier. Using their smartphone they can both take a picture of the documents and fill in the form at the same time.

# Upload video

If you have auditions, you can ask respondents to upload a video. As for images, videos can be filmed and uploaded directly from a smartphone.

# Terms and text

The Terms and text box allows you to write rich text. For waivers you can directly copy and paste terms from a Word document. Activity Messenger will carry over the rich formatting.

# Extra questions

Along with terms and text, you can insert extra questions. Using the placeholder menu, you can insert required or optional checkboxes, radio buttons and even free text inputs. In the editor they are rendered as yellow placeholders. When you save and close the dialog, the preview will transform those in real form inputs.

This short video demonstrates how to insert a text input, YES/NO radio buttons and a required checkbox.


A checkbox is useful to accept a condition. If you use a required checkbox {[x]*}, the user will not be able to submit the form without checking the box. An optional checkbox {[x]} on the other hand, does not need to be checked.

There can only be one checkbox per paragraph. The text before and after the checkbox in the same paragraph will be reported as checked or not. It is recommended to put the checkbox at the start or at the end of a paragraph. The PDF and Excel report will report if the box is checked (Yes) or not (No).

Text inputs

An input allows you to capture free text. If you use a required text input {[____]*}, the user will not be able to submit the form without having it filled. An optional text input {[____]} can be left blank.

There can only be one input per paragraph. It should be placed at the end. The text before will be used as the question. The PDF and Excel report will report the answer to that question.

Radio buttons

Radio buttons {(o)} allow you to present multiple choices. The user will be required to pick one in order to submit the form.

In a paragraph, the text before the radio buttons is the question. The text after each radio buttons are the answers. You can use Shift+Enter to have one answer per row and keep the radio buttons in the same paragraph. The PDF and Excel report will report the answer to that question.

Multiple choice checkboxes

You can use optional checkboxes {[x]} to offer the user multiple choices. In that case put the question label first, then a number of checkboxes listing options.

There must at least be one option. Otherwise it will be reported as a simple checkbox question. The PDF and Excel report will report the checked answers to that question in a comma separated list.

Note: Be sure to always put the label (question) and its input (answer) on the same line. To separate on two lines, you can press on Shift+Enter to keep them in the same paragraph. Activity Messenger can only associate a label to an input if they are in the same paragraph.

# Highlighting important clauses

Important clauses should be clearly identified. Activity Messenger provides you with a built-in yellow with red outline highlight. You can then insert a mandatory "I read and accept" checkbox below.

# Confirmation email

After the respondent fills the form, they will receive an email with the form they have filled as a PDF attachment. They can keep that for their records.

Expand the Communication section to configure those settings. By default Activity Messenger creates a confirmation message template for you. You can adapt it if you like.

You can modify the confirmation email template and adapt it to your needs. You may use placeholders for the participant/parent name, and the children names.

# Bilingual forms

If you have bilingual forms, create two versions. For example one in French and another in English. In the communication section, set the form language. Make sure to update the confirmation email to the proper language as well.

# Sharing the form

Click on Share the form. A popup will appear give you 4 options. You can copy the unique and shareable link of the form to put on your website. You can send the form by email and/or text message. You can embed it on your website. Finally you can print a QR code and post it on a wall for people to fill in the form in person.

If you choose to embed on your website, you can either place the form on a page using an IFRAME, or you can embed a button that opens the form in a popup. Copy the respective HTML code to embed on on your website.

To embed this form on your website you must first set the URL of your organization. Click on the organization menu () and Modify information. Your website must be secured and start with https.

The button with popup option requires JavaScript. Some sites like Wix do not allow that. Embed directly in the page using an IFRAME if that's the case.

# Testing the form

Click on Visit the form. It will open in another browser tab. You can fill in the form. After submission, you will receive a copy of the PDF by email. Go to the Respondents tab and click on Refresh (). You will see yourself in the list. Click on the row to view the questions and answers, and even download the PDF document.

# Reporting

Forms, including waivers and custom forms, are reported on screen under the Respondents tab. You can also download the list of respondents to Excel.

Note: Activity Messenger uses the email address to identify a respondent. In the Respondents table, we will always combine multiple filled forms for one email in a single row.

# Tracking people who have not filled the form

The Not filled tab allows you to find who has not filled in the form. For example against a class roster.

Select a list of people who should fill the form. The system will cross reference respondents and report on people who have not filled it.

If you require a form to be filled every day or every week, you can also check against a specific date range.

If you have a bilingual form, you can include the form of the other language. The system will report who has not signed either forms.

Activity Messenger cross references the email of the respondent to determine if they have filled the form or not. In the case of child forms, it will also use the email of the second parent.

From here you can:

  • Click on "Send to people who have not filled the form". To email or text the form to these people.
  • Click on "Send the list to a colleague". To for example send an email to the coach with parents/children who have not filled the form before an event.
  • Download a report to Excel to process outside of Activity Messenger.
  • Find a person who has not filled the form by name, email or mobile phone.

# Getting notified by email

You and your colleagues can get notified by email when a form is filled. Expand the Communication section. You can specify the users that will receive the notification. The email will contain the PDF as attachment.

You can invite users by clicking on the organization menu () and choosing "Manage users".

# PDF for your records

Waivers may have expiration dates after which a participant/parent must fill the waive again. Activity Messenger keeps signed waiver records on file forever. You can easily lookup a signatory by name, email or mobile phone to find all the waivers they have signed. You can download or print the waivers in PDF format.

# Attach a waiver to an email or SMS message

Activity Messenger allows you to attach a waiver to an email or text message. When you create a new message, you can pick a waiver to attach. It will be sent as a link in the email or text message.

You can also toggle a switch to only send to people who have not yet filled the waiver. This includes at a future time. For example if you schedule the waiver to be sent in two days, the filtering will be applied before the waiver is sent.

Next topic: Saving, pre-filling, gating and closing a form

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