When you’re working on a divorce, child custody battle, and similar, you’ll want to use sworn statements from key witnesses. Those statements can be character statements or provide insight into particular struggles. The idea, of course, is that the witness will provide factual information about the situation or persons involved so that the judge or mediator can make a better-informed decision on the matter. These statements are most common in child custody, divorce, and settlement cases.
A sworn statement is very similar to an affidavit, but they have key differences. It’s also vital that the person acquiring it does so legally. There are various elements to sworn statements, and it’s critical that you understand the scope of our Greenville private investigator’s role in obtaining sworn statements.
Ensuring Evidence is Collected Legally
One of the most important elements of a sworn statement is the final paragraph, the notes that the signer understands the liability of perjury. The paragraph should read something like, “I understand that all the facts and statements here are true…” These paragraphs are very common, and it’s likely that you have seen these paragraphs before. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ve signed a sworn statement, but it’s a critical element here.
Additionally, a court or judge may declare that a sworn statement won’t do and that they need an affidavit. They may even decide that they want to hear from the witness directly. However, many people are more comfortable issuing a sworn statement because they can do so from the security and safety of their homes. Obtaining a sworn statement isn’t useful if the judge won’t accept it.
Differences Between an Affidavit and a Sworn Statement
The two primary differences between an affidavit and a sworn statement are that they don’t have to be given in front of a witness or notary. Virtually anyone can make a sworn statement as long as the endorsement is put into place, noting the risk of a penalty of perjury.
Instead of relying on a witness or a notary, the sworn statements rely on an endorsement paragraph. The paragraph makes it a legal document by acknowledging that the person is under the penalty of perjury. However, it’s important to note that these statements are considered less reliable than an affidavit or a testimony. It’s still evidence, but not as highly regarded as other options.
When working with a private investigator, be sure to include them in the updates that come from any involved attorney. That way, they can be certain to understand if a sworn statement is the best option for your ongoing legal battle. This is especially important during child custody battles in which you might need to further argue for a sworn statement or more highly regarded evidence.
When Would You Need a Sworn Witness Statement?
Often people need a sworn statement to back up the claims regarding behavioral elements such as people not sticking to custody arrangements and similar. For example, if you have it in your custody agreement that your former spouse is not permitted to have your children around their new partner, and you know it’s happening, it might be time for a witness statement. You could turn to your former spouse’s neighbors, the school administrators, and more to acknowledge which adults are present near the child or children.
A sworn statement can help support your claims with someone acknowledging that your version of events is the factual version.
How Can You Obtain A Sworn Witness Statement
Although you can approach a sworn witness statement from various methods, using a private investigator can help ensure that the statement is admissible. It’s far more important to ensure that things are done correctly because often, a simple letter won’t stand up in court even if it’s about the facts involved in the matter or related to consistent behavior from the involved people.
What you can do is to work with a local private investigator. Child custody battles are among the most common times to call for sworn statements. What happens in these situations is that you’re going to need people to support your claims. The claim could be about drug use or the presence of people that shouldn’t be around your child. It could even come down to how consistently the other parent involved is adhering to the guidelines of a prior custody order. A private investigator can acquire sworn statements from people that they identify as key to your outstanding legal issue. Work with Upstate Investigators today to start exploring who can help provide full statements for your troubles.