Once in a while, an old client or friend will drop by our office to get an affidavit or statutory declaration sworn. What if they want to get the job done quickly, and there's a small problem with the document? Can we 'do them a favour' by bending the rules in some way. They say it isn't such a big deal... However, in British Columbia, there are certain rules surrounding the swearing of documents, and doing it right avoids bigger problems later on. This is an informative article that was recently published in the Canadian Lawyer Magazine. It discusses the importance of taking proper affidavits.
At Brosgall Legal | Notary Services we pride ourselves on doing things properly - every time. Owner and principal, Adam Brosgall, is fully qualified, licenced and insured to swear statutory declarations and affidavits, and to administer oaths and solemn affirmations. If you have any questions, or want to book an appointment, please send us an email or call us at 604-685-ADAM . You may also visit our VancouverNotary.biz home page for further information.
What are Statutory Declarations and Affidavits?
Statutory Declarations and Affidavits are formal documents that contain statements of fact. They are different from simple letters, in that you sign them only after swearing or affirming that the facts set out in the documents are true - as if you were in court.
Requirements for Statutory Declarations and Affidavits
As the aforementioned article in the Canadian Lawyer Magazine indicates, there are certain requirements regarding statutory declarations and affidavits. In British Columbia, the Code of Professional Conduct outlines the correct procedure for swearing an affidavit or taking an oath. The Code also includes commentary explaining the rules. Appendix A, s. 1 of the B.C. Code provides as follows:
A lawyer must not swear an affidavit or take a solemn declaration unless the deponent:
- is physically present before the lawyer;
- acknowledges that he or she is the deponent;
- understands or appears to understand the statement contained in the document;
- in the case of an affidavit, swears, declares, or affirms that the contents of the document are true;
- in the case of a solemn declaration, orally states that the deponent makes the solemn declaration conscientiously believing it to be true, and knowing that it is of the same legal force and effect as if made under oath; and,
- signs the document, or if permitted by statute, swears that the signature on the document is that of the deponent.
When a lawyer witnesses the execution of an instrument by an individual under the Land Title Act, the lawyer's signature is a certification by the lawyer that:
- the individual appeared before and acknowledged to the lawyer that he or she is the person named in the instrument as transferor; and,
- the signature witnessed by the lawyer is the signature of the individual who made the acknowledgment. (See s. 43)
Finally, we must be satisfied about the identity of the deponent. This means you must bring proper government issued picture identification (such as a driver's licence, passport, etc.) when you visit our office.
Vancouver Notary Public, Commissioner of Oaths, and Lawyer
Brosgall Legal's owner and principal, Adam Brosgall, is an experienced Vancouver Notary Public, Commissioner of Oaths, and Lawyer. He is fully qualified, licenced, and insured to prepare and draft Statutory Declarations and Affidavits. If you have any questions, please feel free to send us an email, or call 604-685-ADAM  to book an appointment. Same day service and walk-ins are welcome. Please see our Vancouver Notary home page for our other services, and we look forward to seeing you.