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 How valuable is a Credible Witness neighbor?
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Posted - 01/03/2018 :  10:02:33 AM  Show Profile  Visit jbelmont's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Many states allow credible witnesses, but in practical terms how valuable are they really? A CW must swear to the identity of the signer. A family member typically knows their immediate family members intimately and knows their birthdays, middle initials and other intimate details that others would not have committed to memory.

However, a neighbor, coworker or friend might only know you as Joe, or Joe Smith, but not have a clear idea of what your middle name is. If a neighbor swears under Oath that you are Joe J Smith, he is only swearing that because the Notary asked if he could swear you are Joe J Smith. You are planting the info in his head and then having him swear to it. It might be legal, but completely worthless as a surety of identity.

Better yet, ask the CW what the signer's middle name is. If he says, "I dunno" then your CW is as worthless as an incomplete ID.

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