Affidavits are binding statements in writing you can use in a legal setting. As a signatory, you can create an affidavit to emphasize and underscore your statement’s veracity. But since the process is complex, you may wonder how to use an affidavit. If you’re about to swear an oath using an affidavit, learn how to use a sworn affidavit in this article.
What Is the Meaning of an Affidavit, and For What Can You Use it?
A sworn affidavit can refer to a witness’s statements for a case. In an affidavit, you’ll find critical evidence that the deponent (or witness) has given. Say the court doesn’t require in-person testimony. In that situation, you can get an affidavit from a witness before they provide the evidence. Affidavits are similar to sworn statements, but there’s one critical difference.
What Is the Main Difference Between a Sworn Statement and an Affidavit?
A sworn statement is usually a verbal statement, while an affidavit is a written document. The critical difference between a sworn statement and an affidavit is that although both documents contain factual information, you must notarize an affidavit. It’s not obligatory to notarize a sworn statement.
Which Other Types of Affidavit Forms Are Available?
There are various other kinds of sworn affidavit forms, including affidavits of birth, residency affidavits, service and financial affidavits, and general affidavits.
How Can You Use an Affidavit?
There are a few essential steps to follow to use an affidavit:
Begin by making an affidavit form
Complete all the required information on the affidavit form and use concise sentences. Don’t include too much jargon, and be precise and accurate when you write the document.
Use only factual information
Since an affidavit is a document that must contain correct knowledge, ensure you use factual information only.
Sign and notarize the affidavit
Ensure you’ve provided a section where you can sign the affidavit and follow this up with a notarization process. If you’re using it in court, you will need to file the affidavit, so head to the local courthouse to initiate the case.
How Should You Write an Affidavit?
Ensure you follow the key steps below to write an affidavit with accuracy and meet the requirements:
Use the right heading
Your heading may include your name, or you can use a case heading that features the court, case number, plaintiff names, and defendant names.
Use the correct format for the first section
In the first section, ensure you include your name, address, city, state, and zip code, and a sentence structure that declares you will give facts that are true according to your knowledge.
Include a series of paragraphs
Keep the sentences concise and objective. You should add one fact you know is valid in each paragraph. Remember that you must number the paragraphs.
Put a signature section at the bottom
Put a signature section at the bottom so you can sign the document and verify the facts objectively. As you sign it, remember to get it notarized.
4 Best Practices to Remember For a Sworn Affidavit
Now you’ve got the critical steps required to write an affidavit, consider these five best practices to write one accurately.
Follow a chronological order
When describing a complex event, follow a chronological order when outlining your thoughts. Begin with the beginning and work your way to the most recent event.
Avoid drama and inflammatory words
Try to avoid dramatic descriptions or inflammatory words when writing the affidavit. Instead, focus on the facts and the events that occurred and be concise.
Only use facts when writing the sworn affidavit
If you lie in an affidavit, this counts as a legal violation. There are consequences for this, such as a fine or imprisonment. Only use facts when writing the document.
Edit your sworn affidavit
Keep grammatical and spelling mistakes out of your affidavit; ensure you proofread it and keep it error-free.
Using Sworn Affidavits: Keep These Critical Points in Mind
Using sworn affidavits can be a critical part of a legal process, and using one doesn’t have to be complex. Remember that every detail you include in an affidavit must be factual. Keep them concise, and avoid using inflammatory words or dramatic sentences. Always edit the document to avoid grammatical errors, and follow a chronological order when describing the events. Use an affidavit by getting it notarized and signing the document beforehand.
Susan Noel is an experienced content writer. She is associated with many renowned business and law blogs as a guest author where she shares her valuable articles with the audience.