In an affidavit, regardless of what you are asking the court for, you will answer three basic questions:
1. Who is my family?
In this section, you will tell the court several things:
- The names, ages and dates of birth of all the children
- Information about any children who are not part of this court proceeding (for example, a child from a previous relationship) and what the arrangements are for them
- The full names of both parents
- The date you and your partner were married or began to live together
- The date of separation
- Who everyone is living with right now
- Any information about arrangements for custody, access and support that are in place right now
2. What do I want?
You will list which of the following you are applying for:
- Custody: joint, shared, sole
- Access: How much is there? Is it supervised? Is access scheduled or unscheduled? Are exchanges supervised?
- Child support
- Spousal support
- Division of property
- Exclusive possession of the matrimonial home
- Restraining order
3. Why should I get it?
This is the long part of the affidavit that provides detailed information about why you should get what you are asking for. For example:
- If you are applying for custody, you need to describe who had the main responsibility for caring for the children before you separated and what your plan is for caring for them now.
- If you want access restricted or supervised, you need to describe why.
- If you are seeking child support, you need to tell the court whatever you know about your ex-partner’s job and income.
- If you want spousal support, you need to tell the court about your work and income, both current and historic, as well as what you know about your ex-partner’s income.
- To get an order for exclusive possession of the matrimonial home, you have to show why this is in the best interests of the children.
- If you need a restraining order, you need to provide detailed information about why you are fearful for your safety and/or the safety of your children.