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What Is an Affidavit Of Identity?

Including false information on an affidavit of identity is a criminal offense.
A notary public often witnesses the signature on an affidavit of identity.
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  • Written By: Daphne Mallory
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 18 October 2014
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The affidavit of identity is a legal document used to verify the identity of the affiant. The affiant is the title given to the person who is required to sign the affidavit and whose identity is being verified. The document is also used to confirm the legal signature of the signatory because it is often witnessed, signed, and sealed by a notary public. The affiant has to swear that the information given is true and correct, and he or she may have to produce a picture ID to the notary public. The document lists personal and identifiable information, which often includes the signatory's Social Security number, date of birth, and home address.

Falsifying a legal affidavit of identity is considered a criminal offense in many legal jurisdictions. The criminal offense is perjury, because an affidavit is a sworn oath. It often contains a statement warning that the recipient of the affidavit has the right to and will prosecute the affiant. There's often a statement in which the affiant swears that the information that he or she is providing is correct, true, and complete to the best of the affiant's knowledge. Individuals and companies that rely on these forms often require these statements to prevent fraud and to protect themselves in cases where the affiant cannot provide a picture ID or other documents to prove the affiant's identity.

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There are many uses of an affidavit of identity. Some governments require candidates seeking elective office to submit one as part of their eligibility requirements. Financial institutions may require it from certain customers in order to open bank or brokerage accounts. Litigants in small claims courts may be required to submit an affidavit as well, such as when they have to submit a deposition or when filing a complaint.

Parents, guardians or other adults may be asked to sign an affidavit of identity for minor children. Government agencies, courts, and private companies may require one to prove the legal name and identity of the minor. Minor children often don't have the documents that adults have to prove their identity, such as a passport or driver's license. The adults may produce other documents to satisfy the notary public, such as a birth certificate or school records. In these cases, the adult affiant will be guilty of perjury for falsifying any of the information contained in the document.

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wesley91
Post 3

I am not sure if this is completely relevant but a girl that I worked with got in a lot of trouble over an identity affidavit. Apparently, when she purchased her car a couple of years ago, her sister co-signed with her because her credit was slow.

She and her sister had a huge fight that ended with them not speaking. The girl I work with was getting behind on some bills and wanted to refinance the car. It would have decreased her payment by over $100 a month. However, her sister's signature was required as well. Since they were feuding, there was no way that would happen.

She had a friend who was a notary public sign off on a form that was "signed" by her sister. It was an affidavit declaring that her signature was authentic. The sister never knew about it.

The car was refinanced once the affidavit was sent in. Now, the girl I work with is in a lot of trouble, as is the notary public, because her sister found out about it. I guess this is just another form of the many identity theft cases.

strawCake
Post 2

@sunnySkys - That sounds like a mess! I had to get my social security card replaced a few years ago because I lost it, and it took my whole day.

I have a friend that had to get an affidavit of identity to open a brokerage account at a bank. My friend had all of his other forms of ID though, so I think that probably made it easier for him!

sunnySkys
Post 1

I actually had to get one of these at one point. My purse was stolen, and I happened to have my social security card in there too. So my license, credit cards, social security card, and bank card were all gone!

It was such a mess trying to get everything replaced, especially because my mom had lost my birth certificate. We had to get another one from the hospital, and then the affidavit of identity helped me get the rest of my stuff replaced.

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