The purpose of this article is to explain how to get an affidavit in Nigeria as of this year 2023. An affidavit is a written sworn statement. When you use an affidavit, you are declaring, to the best of your knowledge, that the information included within it is true and accurate. Affidavits are only legitimate when they are made voluntarily and without any pressure, similar to taking an oath in court.
The original document needs to be filed with the court before an affidavit can be utilized in any Nigerian court of law for any reason. For any purposes, only the original or office copy of an affidavit is acceptable. Any affidavit that has been sworn before a judge, official, or other authorized person may be used in court in any situation where one is required. A court judge, magistrate, or other official with the power to administer oaths must have the approval before an affidavit can be signed.
Any affidavit sworn in another nation before a representative such as a judge or magistrate, and authenticated by the official seal of the notary public or court, or a lawfully authorized officer in the Nigerian embassy, high commission, or consulate in that nation can be used in court in any situation where an affidavit is acceptable.
In every situation where affidavits are admissible, these documents may be utilized in court. An affidavit is deemed valid and may be presented in any court as long as it has the seal or signature of a court, judge, magistrate, or other official.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF AFFIDAVIT IN NIGERIA TODAY
- Affidavits of facts: This is an affidavit submitted to a court to request permission about certain facts.
- Affidavits that attest to the loss of property or documents
- Affidavits for change of name: This is used to announce a name change.
- A declaration of age affidavit may be used in place of a birth certificate.
- Affidavits attesting to excellent behavior
- A declaration of facts used as evidence in court cases: This is an oath-recorded written deposition in support of court cases.
- Affidavits that attest to the loss of important papers such birth certificates, death certificates, stock certificates, driver’s licenses, car information, identity cards, etc.
AUTHORIZED PERSONS THAT ISSUE AND SWEAR AFFIDAVITS AT FEDERAL LEVEL IN NIGERIA
The following is a list of people that are authorized to issue and swear affidavits in Nigeria at federal level, they are:
- The Chief Justice of Nigeria
- Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria
- President and Justices of the Court of Appeal
- Judges of the Federal High Court
- Notaries Public
- Commissioners for Oaths: These are court employees/court registrars who are not below least grade level 7, and are authorized to administer oaths.
AUTHORIZED PERSONS THAT ISSUE AND SWEAR AFFIDAVITS AT STATE LEVEL IN NIGERIA
The following is a list of people that are authorized to issue and swear affidavits in Nigeria at State level, they are:
- The Chief Judge of the State
- Judges of the High Court (of the State)
- Notaries Public
- Commissioners for Oaths (Court officials).
All Nigerian States have the same regulations, processes, and authorized individuals who can receive affidavits and oaths. Private or personal affidavits, also referred to as affidavits for non-court proceedings. Affidavits that are used privately or personally are ones that are not used in court proceedings. To administer oaths and issue private affidavits, consult a Commissioner for Oaths or a Notary Public (used in non-court proceedings).
GUIDE ON HOW TO GET AN AFFIDAVIT IN NIGERIA 2023
The constitution of Nigeria specifies the following requirements for obtaining an affidavit:
- When sworn, the deponent must sign the affidavit. He or she must mark it themselves in front of the Commissioner for Oaths if they are illiterate or blind.
- Deponents to an affidavit must appear in person before the Commissioner for Oaths.
- An affidavit’s deponents must include their full name, occupation, place of residence, and country of citizenship.
The following are the step by step processes on how to obtain a sworn affidavit in Nigeria this 2023:
- A notary public or a court’s commissioner for oaths will be approached by the deponent (someone who wishes to swear an affidavit). Kindly note that a Commissioner for Oaths administers the oath for affidavits submitted for judicial proceedings
- The required fee must be paid, and a receipt is given to the deponent. There will always be a receipt provided for an affidavit signed in court
- The notary or commissioner for oath must examine a passport or national ID card to confirm the deponent’s identification
- The Commissioner for Oaths or Notary must ask questions and require the deponent to provide any additional proof necessary to establish the facts in order to confirm the accuracy of the deponent’s testimony
- After that, the deponent will affirm the facts and sign the affidavit
- The affidavit must be signed and sealed by the Commissioner for Oaths or Notary
- In conclusion, affidavits are created by simply swearing under oath in front of the appropriate authority. The deponent has to go to the court registry for swearing.
SECURITY FEATURES ON COURT-ISSUED AFFIDAVITS
Even though an affidavit lacks any security protections and it is nearly hard to ascertain a document’s authenticity on the spot, there are some features that you can check to see whether it is genuine, and they are:
- The deponent’s signature which must be appended on the affidavit
- The stamp of the notary or commissioner for oaths who swore the document
- The court’s or the Notary’s seal or stamp
- Each court’s unique rubber or plastic seal is used on affidavits that are produced by the court. The affidavit will be sealed with the court seal and bear the Commissioner for Oaths’ signature at the bottom.
Affidavits signed by a Notary Public usually contain the following:
- The notary’s stamp used to sign the affidavit
- The seal as well as the name of the Notary Public
- Supreme Court enrolment number.