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What is an Affidavit of Marriage?
An affidavit of marriage is a legal document and a sworn statement submitted to the court, university or another institution, to verify that two people are married. Affidavits of marriage are often alternatives to a marriage certificate, which is typically issued by the Government.
An affidavit of marriage may be required for multiple reasons. They may be required on issues related to child custody, divorce proceedings, and changing your name.
How Do You Write an Affidavit of Marriage?
You can use an affidavit of marriage as a sworn statement that you are married and to name who you are married to. An affidavit is generally needed when applying for a foreign visa or when you do not have your marriage certificate . A marriage certificate is an official statement that two people are married. In most jurisdictions, this is issued by a government official after the civil registration of marriage.
There are a few general steps following when preparing an affidavit of marriage.
- Step 1 – Specify whether one or both spouses will be completing and signing it. It will need to be specified if one or both spouses are completing and signing it. If only one spouse is completing it you should select “single” otherwise, select “joint”. An affidavit of marriage should be completed by a person, or the Affiant, who can attest to their personal knowledge of the circumstances surrounding the marriage under oath. This person can be the spouse in the marriage or someone present at the wedding, like a family friend. The document includes identifying information of the Affiant–names, addresses and birth date. The document describes the wedding and the marriage, such as when and where it took place. The document also explains how the subject and the affiant know each other and sources of the Affiant’s personal knowledge of the circumstances surrounding the marriage.
- Step 2 – Specify the state where the marriage certificate was signed and dated. You will need to specify the state where the marriage certificate was signed in and the date of signing.
- Step 3 – Specify the country and state where the affidavit is being signed. Finally, you will need to specify the country and state where the affidavit is being signed. Once the form is complete, you will need to print and sign it in front of a notary who will also need to sign the form. The completed affidavit should be kept in a safe place so that it can be used as a proof of marriage.
While there are no laws outlining what to put in an affidavit, there are some common practices. The document should include robust information to be persuasive under authority.
You can read more on executing an affidavit of marriage.
What’s Included in An Affidavit of Marriage
There are few things that you should include in an affidavit of marriage:
- Title of affidavit: The title of the affidavit needs to tell the person reading it what the sworn statement will be about. In this case, it would be an “Affidavit of Marriage”.
- Statement of identity: The next part of the affidavit should identify the parties involved. It should include the name, age, occupation, and other personal information of the parties.
- Statement of truth: This section should be used to swear that the affidavit contains true facts. An affidavit of marriage is equivalent to swearing under oath in a courtroom.
- Facts: You will need to state facts of your marriage. Avoid using personal opinion or observations. This can contain the names, dates and times of when the marriage took place. You can add the state, country or place where it took place.
- Signature: Remember that both parties will need to sign the affidavit. This will need to be done under the presence of a licensed witness or notary.
- Notary signature: The licensed notary or the witness will also need to sign the bottom of the affidavit.
Here is an article with more information on what to include in an affidavit of marriage.
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Purpose of an Affidavit of Marriage
Affidavits can be used for multiple purposes. They are often filed in courts to show that a certain information is true. Sometimes an attorney can use your affidavit so you do not have to appear in court. This would also save time and money that you would otherwise need to spend on any legal events.
Affidavits are often required in a number of judicial proceedings such as estate planning matters, immigration and family law issues. Without this affidavit, other legal instruments might not be considered valid. Affidavits can be used in banks and insurance matters as well.
Since an affidavit is used in multiple legal events, you should always be truthful in an affidavit to avoid committing perjury. Perjury means lying under oath to avoid any penalty.
Affidavits are widely used in the immigration process. When one is applying for a marriage green-card, they will need to show that their marriage is a legal. One can provide a marriage certificate with the green card application. However, that alone might not be enough to show a bona fide marriage. A bona fide marriage means that the parties intend to build a future together and that the marriage is not just for green card purposes. An affidavit of marriage can provide that support.
When You Need an Affidavit of Marriage
Common situations where you can use an affidavit of marriage include the following:
- When your marriage record is misplaced or destroyed
- When your marriage record is incomplete or incorrect
- When you need to provide supplementary proof of marriage along with a marriage certificate.
Once an affidavit of marriage is completed, it can be used as an alternative or supplement to an official marriage certificate.
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