AFFIDAVITS AND STATUTORY DECLARATIONS
An affidavit is a written statement of facts voluntarily made by a deponent under an oath or affirmation administered by a person authorized to do so by law. This is basically a written statement from an individual which is sworn to be true.
A statutory declaration is a sworn statement made in a prescribed form before a justice of the peace, notary public, commissioner of oaths or other person having authority therein under any law for the time being in force to take or receive a declaration and authorized to administer an oath.
Essentially there is no difference in drafting a statutory declaration and an affidavit. The only difference comes where statutory declarations are used in extrajudicial proceedings while affidavits are usually used in court, declarations are used in non-contentious matters while affidavit are used in contentious matters and declarations are not sworn under oath in court however they are still commissioned by a commissioner for oaths.
TYPES OF AFFIDAVITS
Affidavits vary according to their “purpose” “circumstances” or “subject matter”. We have the following examples of affidavits required in Kenya:
LAWS AND REGULATION
Affidavits in Kenya are regulated under the Oaths and Statutory Declarations Act, Chapter 15 of the Laws of Kenya. Other laws that may require affidavits to be sworn by a deponent include The Interpretation and General provision Act, The Civil Procedure Act, The Central Bank of Kenya Act, The NHIF Act among others.
Many government offices require affidavits for all sorts of applications and processes where they wish to have additional comfort on the facts presented before them”.
Court issued affidavits are those affidavits that are sworn by witnesses for purposes of giving evidence in court during court proceedings and are usually relied upon as testimonies while adducing evidence. Notary public administered oaths or taken affidavits can be used universally because their jurisdiction is applicable in other countries
Whereas a Notary Public in Kenya has all the powers that a Commissioner for Oaths possesses, a notary is used in instances where affidavits are to be used outside the Kenya jurisdiction (especially outside the commonwealth countries). A notary public in Kenya must have at least five years of practice as an advocate, documents to be used internationally are attested by a notary public and must be registered with the Supreme Court of Kenya
PROCEDURE TO OBTAIN AN AFFIDAVIT
The process of getting an affidavit in Kenya follows the three understated steps:
Affidavits in Kenya are usually drawn up by lawyers and endorsed before a commissioner for oaths/notary public/court officer where then the deponent personally appears before the Commissioner for Oaths.
Any natural person is allowed to depose an affidavit, with the exception of minors or persons not mentally capable to comprehend the oath. Also companies cannot swear Affidavits as a directors or officials of a company or any legal entity can swear an affidavit on behalf of the company.
ESSENTIALS OF AN AFFIDAVIT
PENALTY FOR FALSE UTTERANCES
An affidavit or a statutory declaration is a legal document and as such contains a penalty where one makes a false utterance in one. If any person knowingly and willfully makes any statement which is false in a material particular in a statutory declaration, he shall be guilty of an offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or to a fine not exceeding two thousand shillings.
Feel free to contact us in case of any further inquiries concerning affidavits in Kenya and statutory declarations at email@example.com or by phone +254726328555 or +254727789616.