Skip to main content

Customer Center

SmartVault Customer Center

DocuSign - Understanding Envelopes and KBAs

New Applies To Box.png


This page will give you an understanding of DocuSign Envelopes and KBAs  If you need help with a specific DocuSign feature, please login to your DocuSign account or visit their online training center: DocuSign University.  


A DocuSign Envelope is used to send a document to your recipients for e-signature.  Envelopes include any single document up to 25MB in size that can be emailed to any number of people to be signed.

KBA (Knowledge Based Authentication)

KBAs or Knowledge-Based Authentications are additional ID Checks that include 3rd party verification of a signer's identity.  This method requires the recipient to answer detailed questions about themselves, based on data available in public records (such as their current and former addresses).  Each signer of an Envelope verified via KBA incurs an additional cost.


  • Example 1 - A document that does not require one or more signers' identities to be verified will only require 1 Envelope.
  • Example 2 - A document that requires 1 signer's identity to be verified will have to be sent in 1 Envelope + 1 KBA.
  • Example 3 - A document that requires 2 signers' identities to be verified will have to be sent in 1 Envelope + 2 KBAs.


For 8879 and other e-file authorization forms, the IRS requires a KBA or Identity Check for each signer to be compliant for e-signature.

  • Was this article helpful?