Statutory Declaration Solicitor

Statutory declarations are sometimes associated with affidavits, which are important legal documents commonly used in court, but they can be used in a broader context and for many reasons.

A statutory declaration is a written factual statement whereby a declarant affirms that the facts stated are accurate to the best of their knowledge.

The statutory declaration can also be used without formal legal proceedings. Government departments provide it in downloadable and printable form. The person making the declaration must sign the form in the presence of an unauthorised witness or prescribed person. The form must be completed accurately and honestly. Making a false declaration can be a serious offence and lead to penalties.

Who Can Witness a Statutory Declaration

The statutory declaration can be witnessed by a person authorised by law to administer oaths. Some of the persons entitled to administer oaths include:

  • A solicitor
  • A commissioner of oaths
  • A notary public
  • A justice of the peace
  • Any other qualified person

When are Statutory Declarations Commonly Used?

Statutory declarations are commonly used by declarants to satisfy authorities' requirements when they cannot provide other documentation. Some common reasons for statutory declarations include:

Getting Married Abroad

You may be required to provide a notarised statutory declaration if you want to get married abroad and cannot provide certain evidence. In this case, a common reason for the declaration is if you have lost birth certificates or passports proving family ties back at home.

Discrepancy in Names

A statutory declaration can state the reason for the discrepancies and confirm that you are the same person. Statutory declarations can also be used if you have changed your name and lost your deed poll. The declaration can also confirm when the name change occurred and what your present and former names are.

How Do You Get a Statutory Declaration?

You can get a statutory declaration by either drafting one or downloading a statutory declaration form online.

If you're drafting it yourself, you must follow the requirements under the act. A legal professional can also assist you with drafting the statutory declaration.

Prescribed templates have been issued and can be found on the internet. These include statutory declarations for enrolling a name change or entering into a new tenancy under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954.

What Are the Requirements for a Statutory Declaration?

The statutory declaration must comply with the prescribed wording under the act. If the form is downloaded, the work will likely be pre-printed.

Once drafted, you must sign the form in the presence of one of the prescribed witnesses, like a solicitor. You will be asked to provide identification through a photographic ID such as a passport or driving license. You may also require one proof of address no older than 3 months. Anyone can sign a statutory declaration if they are over 18 and understand what they are singing. You may seek independent legal advice if you have challenges understanding the declaration.

The person witnessing the statutory declaration must sign and either write or stamp their name, address, and capacity on the form.