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What Is An Affidavit – A Beginners Guide

12 March, 2021


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At one point in life, just about everyone will require an affidavit during common personal or business affairs. Hence, it is important that you have an idea, what is an affidavit? 

What Is An Affidavit?

An Affidavit is a sworn statement in written form. The most common uses of Affidavit are used in courts for negotiation or settlements. They are very common in family law cases or bankruptcy cases.

The process goes like this; you must swear to all the documents you have provided in the Affidavit and confirm that they are all correct. When you notarize an affidavit, you must ensure to sign the document in front of the witnesses.

The Different Part Of Affidavit

While you write an affidavit, it starts with a clear heading. The heading of the Affidavit will show the type of case you’re in. And if there are no cases involved, the Affidavit will simply have you in it.

Given below are the things that your affidavit heading will encapsulate.

  • Name of your court.
  • Case number.
  • Name of the plaintiff.
  • Defendants.

Once the case affidavit is filed, it is signed by the county or the state government.

The first statement will show your name, address, and the reason this Affidavit is made. Depending on who is making the draft, the word assembly will vary.

The following paragraph then contains facts. Once the factors are laid out loud and clear, it is followed by a confirmation, where you have to confirm that you have said everything needed to stay and you have nothing to add in the Affidavit.

Finally comes the signature section of the notary section where you’ve signed the document, thereby confirming the credibility of the documents and statements you have given. 

Restriction On Affidavit

While moving forward with what Affidavit is, you might come across a question, what are the restrictions of the Affidavit. Well, there are none! There are no age restrictions in place to sign the Affidavit.

However, you need to have a sound mind when signing and need to have a clear understanding of the documents and why you’re signing the documents.

Remember that Affidavit is a type of written oath. This means a person who is below 18 is not allowed to sign. However, minors can be asked to sign the Affidavit if the family court is involved and the minor has a sound mind.

Consequences Of Affidavit

An affidavit is similar to taking the oath. Hence, it is important that you sign the Affidavit only after reading and understanding the whole document. Keep in mind that, Affidavit is a legal procedure, and it does come with various consequences if not taken seriously.

If you provide any information that is incorrect or lie about the Affidavit, you could be fined for perjury. Given below are some fines that you have accrued.

  • Community services.
  • Monetary fines.
  • Jail time, although this happens only in rare cases.

The punishment and its severity depend on the states.

When Might You Need Affidavit?

Continuing with- what is an affidavit, the next stop is the cases and scenarios where you will feel the need for an Affidavit. There are hundreds of conditions where you will find the need to take the help of an affidavit.

For instance, in family law, you first need to go through a financial affidavit as part of the discovery process. And in some cases, you need to create drafts.

Given below are some common instances where you will need the help of an affidavit.

  • Notifying the creditors about the death of someone.
  • To verify residency.
  • To state that you have received legal documents.
  • To make formal statements in court hearings.
  • To claim assets & property.
  • To confirm another person’s identity.

How To Write An Affidavit?

When we are talking about- what is an Affidavit; we can certainly not forget to talk about how to properly write one. An affidavit is a legal document; hence, it is important that you follow the right way to write an affidavit.

Given below are the combinations of some basic steps to create a perfect affidavit.

Step 1: Title

The first part of your Affidavit needs to be a clear title. Write a title that is loud and clear and gives a clear message to the reader. While writing an affidavit, mention both your name and the purpose of the Affidavit.

Step 2: Craft A Statement Of Identity

The next section of an affidavit is a statement of identity. This is where you will include all your personal information. Your personal information will include your name, age, address, and occupation. You can even add other relevant documents that might be relevant to the case.

Step 3: Write A Statement Of Truth

This statement of Affidavit confirms all the information and ensures that whatever information is given in the affidavits stands true to the best of your knowledge. A statement of truth is equivalent to taking an oath in the courtroom.

Step 4: State The facts

Once you have completed all the steps, it is time to state the facts. This section will most likely be the longest as it will showcase the facts you will talk about. Depending on the facts, this section can be the shortest as well as the longest.

Step 5: Reiterate Your Statement

Once you have counted all the statements and the facts you have showcased in the Affidavit, you will close your Affidavit with a statement confirming all the information.

All you need to do is add a quick summary of all the facts you have encapsulated in the documents and outline the facts to the best of your knowledge.

Step 6: Notarize

By signing the Affidavit along with all the documents, you complete the whole process. You can complete the whole affidavit process but wait for the signing process. So, do not sign if there are no licensed witnesses. Remember, this part needs to be completed in front of a notary only.

Take Away

The bottom line of what is an affidavit is that it is an oath in the form of a document that helps you verify your facts or add value to your reasonings and documents. We hope that this article was helpful and you could get the answer you were looking for.

For more information like these, you can follow LawersNote. We encapsulate laws and their application to the best of our knowledge.

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