How to force signature to respect signHere tab's bounding box ?

  • 14 June 2024
  • 2 replies

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I calling signature API with JAva SDK.
I generate my PDF with itext library and I’m able to extract the correct position and dimension of some table cells in my PDF. I pass these coordinates to SignHereTabs because signers should sign on their own table row in a specific cell.

Because PDF coordinates have a bottom-left origin but Docusign’s fixed-positioning coordinates have top-left origin, I reverse my “y” coordinate by subtracting it from page size to get the correct y-from-top value. Itext and Docusign coordinates values are compatible because they both use dots as unit ( = 1/72th of inch)

But I have 2 issues :
1) position : signHere effective position (as given to signer by Docusign signing view on their website) is about 68 or 72 pixel too low. I don’t know what is shifting signHere tabs 1 row toward the bottom…
2) dimension : though I set explicitly signHere width and height, signature are not respecting it and are too big. I could reduce signature size by setting a 0.5 scale on signHere tab, but I would rather set an absolute max size  (a bounding box for signature) as I know the exact area where signature can fit, is it possible ?

2 replies


Hello @Joachim 

Thanks for contacting DocuSign support.


Please review this:

*Refine Coordinate Adjustment:

Double-check your page size calculation for the y-coordinate conversion. There might be a small offset you need to account for beyond just the page height.

Experiment with adding/subtracting a few pixels to the y-coordinate to see if it corrects the vertical shift.


*Use Anchor Tags (Alternative):

Consider using Anchor Tags instead of absolute positioning. These link SignHere tabs to specific text strings in your PDF. This eliminates the need for precise coordinate calculations and adapts better to potential rendering variations.


*Scale Signatures (Temporary Fix):

While not ideal, setting a ScaleValue of 0.5 on the SignHere tab can temporarily reduce signature size. However, it won't enforce a strict bounding box.


*Explore Custom Fields (Advanced):

If you have more control over your PDF generation, consider adding hidden text fields (white on white) at the desired signature locations. Link your SignHere tabs to these fields for precise control.

Note: This approach requires advanced PDF manipulation skills.


Additional Tips:

Refer to Docusign's documentation for the latest specifications on SignHere tabs and coordinate systems:

Check Docusign community forums for similar issues and solutions:


Badge +2

I would like avoid alternatives like relative anchoring, because this will not solve my main issue. Anchoring will not solve the signature size issue and an offset may remain

Signatures are too big, and scale factor is not convenient. Ideal would be a bounding box.

Once the signature is scaled, an offset remain. Without fixing offset, the sign-here arrow in a box is well-placed (it fits into cell) but the signature itself is too low. With fixing offset of one half-height, the sign-here box is one half-cell height to high, but the arrow is pointing to the middle of the cell and the signature is more centered.

The coordinates refinement shouldn’t be necessary and signature should have boundaries.

Docusign reversed Y coordinate is another issue. Why not sticking to PDF natural coordinate system ? Relative anchoring is easier for HTML documents, so they are not a priority when considering where to put absolute coordinates origin.