Elements of Affidavit- General Provisions Relating to Personal Knowledge of Affiant



An affidavit must be based on the personal knowledge of the individual making the affidavit (the affiant.)  The affiant must swear or affirm under oath that the facts stated in the affidavit are true.  An affidavit should contain only relevant facts and circumstances.  It should not contain any conclusions drawn by the affiant.  Statements in the affidavits which are the opinion, belief, or conclusions of the affiant are of no effect and will not be considered by the court.  When an affidavit contains both facts within the personal knowledge of the affiant, as well as conclusions drawn by him/her, only the facts should be considered by courts, and extraneous material should be disregarded.

As a rule, an affidavit must be verified by a person having personal knowledge of the facts stated by the affiant.  However, courts may rely on the reasonable inferences drawn from the facts stated by the affiant.  Similarly, courts may also at times consider an affidavit even if conclusions are intermingled with facts.  A verified pleading may also be used as an affidavit if the facts stated in it are true to the party’s own knowledge.