AFFIDAVITS

Affidavits

 

What is an affidavit?

If you are applying to one of the Courts or any authorities, you may be required to file an affidavit.

An affidavit is a formal written statement setting out the facts of your case. The affidavit becomes evidence in your case. . It is the main way you present evidence (facts of the case) to a court. It must be sworn, or affirmed, usually before Notary, associates, deputy registrar or judicial officers. Affidavits may also be sworn by other people in support of your case e.g. witnesses. The court has a precedent form to use

Evidence can be a complex matter.

Any affidavit you file in court to support your case must be served on all parties.

Why are affidavits important?

Affidavits present the facts you rely on for your case – your evidence. Oral (spoken) evidence is only allowed with the Judge’s permission so you need to prepare your affidavits carefully.

When do you file an affidavit?

In the Family Court, you need to file an affidavit with an interim application, response or when directed by the Court.

In the Magistrates Court, you need to file an affidavit with your application or response, for both interim and final orders, and when directed by the Court.

What can you say in an affidavit?

The affidavit is a statement of facts. It should set out observations without colour or comments. Generally, the affidavit should not set out the opinion of the person making the affidavit.

In writing your affidavit it would be useful to refer to the factors a court must consider before making an

Can I prepare my own affidavit?

Although you can prepare your own affidavit, it is often not easy. If you prepare your own affidavit, the document should be typed or printed clearly on only one side of the page.

What can I say in an affidavit?

An affidavit is a statement of facts. Therefore, you should include all the facts that are relevant in your case. Importantly, your affidavit should support the orders you have asked the Court to make in your application or response. The length of your affidavit will depend on the complexity of your case. Your affidavit does not need to be lengthy, so long as you include all the facts that you are relying on as evidence. Try not to leave out any relevant information as you may not get a chance to add it in later.

How can you attach documents to an affidavit?

Frequently an affidavit refers to other documents e.g. a contract. Often it is helpful to attach a document to the affidavit. The document is then known as an annexure. You number each page of the document and if more than one document is attached refer to each by numbers e.g. Annexure 1, Annexure 2 etc… Each annexure must have a statement signed by the authorized person identifying the annexure as the document referred to in the affidavit. The wording of the statement is:

This is the document referred to as Annexure [insert reference number] in the affidavit of [insert deponent’s name], sworn/affirmed at [insert place] on [insert date] before me [authorised person to sign and provide name and qualification].

The statement must be signed at the same time as the affidavit and by the same authorised person.

The Courts have different requirements about affidavits.

Affidavits by other witnesses

If you are relying on evidence from a third party to support your case, such as a family member, friend or professional, you will need to file a separate affidavit on their behalf. You should only file an affidavit by a witness if the evidence is relevant and cannot be provided by you.

Signing an affidavit

The person making an affidavit (the deponent) must sign the bottom of each page in the presence of an authorised person.

 the full name of the person making the affidavit, and their signature
 whether the affidavit is sworn or affirmed
 the day and place the person signs the affidavit, and
 the full name and occupation of the authorised person, and their signature.

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