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07 Statutory Declarations


Summary

A Statutory Declaration is a written statement made by a person (deponent) of facts which are true and correct. As Statutory Declarations are made under acts of parliament they are legal documents and there are penalties for making a false statement. Statutory Declarations are made under the Oaths Act 1867 for matters dealing with Queensland legislation and under the Statutory Declarations Act 1959 for Commonwealth matters.

Statutory Declarations must be properly worded according to each Act and standard forms are available. However there are many government department forms and business forms which include Statutory Declarations in their format.

A Statutory Declaration may have attachments which are referred to as annexures. These must be numbered and referred to in the declaration.

A person making a Statutory Declaration must make a formal declaration as to the truthfulness of the statement.

It is not necessary for the JP to examine the contents of the declaration. The role of the JP is to ensure that the witnessing process is correct.

Check

  • the person presenting the declaration is the person signing the document
  • the declaration is in the correct format for the particular act (State, Commonwealth)
  • the declaration includes the deponent's name and address
  • the jurat is in place
  • any annexures are mentioned in the body of the declaration
  • if there are spaces, errors or cross outs which require the deponent and JP to initial

Process

  1. Check and note the identity of the person
  2. Make sure the declaration is completed correctly
  3. If not, point out changes which may need to be made
  4. If there are blank spaces explain that they will need to be ruled out and initialled by the deponent and JP
  5. If there are errors or cross outs the JP and deponent must initial them
  6. Give the requisite warning followed by the formal declaration by the deponent
  7. Obtain the deponent's signature
  8. Complete the jurat (place, date), sign and seal the document
  9. Record in your log book. Include reference to annexures

Notes

  • It is preferable that a statutory declaration be made by one person.  However if more than more than one person insists on making a joint declaration, then follow the procedure for affidavits for multiple persons.
  • If annexures are included use wording similar to witnessing an affidavit annexure, referring to the Statutory Declaration of the person.

References

  • JP Handbook, Chapter 3
  • QJA Guide, Chapter 5