In the Affidavit, you tell the court about what happened and why you need the court’s help to deal with the abuse. There are two versions of the Affidavit form:
There are some very important sections on the Affidavit form. First, you need to list and describe the most recent incident of abuse, as well as other past incidents. Do your best to give dates and details about the following:
- Did your abuser injure you? If they did, how? It’s okay if you never went to the doctor, but if you did go, you should say so on the form.
- Did your abuser threaten or scare you or your children?
- Did they keep you from leaving a room?
- Did they use a weapon to hurt or threaten you?
- Did they hurt your pets or damage your property?
- Were the police called?
- Has your abuser stalked or followed you?
- Did your children witness the abuse? And has it changed your children’s behavior in any way?
Next, the form asks you to describe the most serious incident of abuse, whether it happened a long time ago or more recently. Be sure to give as much detail to this incident as you did the others.
The form also asks if your abuser has guns or other weapons. List them and their locations. Guns and weapons create a dangerous situation during the RFA process. If you list them on the affidavit, the court can order law enforcement to collect them to help keep you safe.
The Affidavit form usually needs to be signed in front of a notary, so do not sign until you are with a notary. There are exceptions, such as at night, on a holiday or weekend, or if you can't get to a courthouse.
The clerk at the courthouse is a notary. During the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be able to use a Supplemental Affirmation form instead of signing the Affidavit in person with a notary.
Note: The defendant will get a copy of this document if the judge gives you a temporary order or if the case goes to a hearing.