A Commissioner for Oaths is a person who is authorised to verify affidavits, which are statements in writing and on oath, and other legal documents.
A Commissioner for Oaths is appointed by the Chief Justice and is usually, though not always, a solicitor. Every solicitor holding a current practising certificate is entitled to administer oaths and to use the title "Commissioner for Oaths". A Commissioner for Oaths may continue to act as a Commissioner for Oaths for as long as he/she remains a solicitor.
A Commissioner for Oaths who is a:
A Commissioner for Oaths, who is also a Peace Commissioner, must not charge fees for administering oaths or taking declarations or affirmations that they are required by law not to charge for as a Peace Commissioner.
You may need the services of a Commissioner for Oaths if:
The essential functions of a Commissioner for Oaths are:
A person making an oath will be required to swear the oath by raising the New Testament. A person who is Jewish may swear the oath by raising the Old Testament. It's important to remember that you may also be required to provide evidence of your identity by the Commissioner particularly if you are having an affadavit verified (but this largely depends on the type of documents that is being verified). It is useful however to bring a standard form of identification with you on your visit, (a passport, driving licence, social welfare book, student I.D. card, etc.).
The oath to be taken by persons before the Commissioner for Oaths is as follows
"I swear by Almighty God that this is my name and handwriting, and that the contents of this my affidavit are true".
A person who objects to being sworn on the grounds that taking an oath is against his/her religious belief or that he/she has no religious belief is permitted to make a solemn affirmation, which is phrased as follows:
"I, A.B., do solemnly and sincerely affirm that this is my name and handwriting, and that the contents of this my affidavit are true".
The fees a Commissioner for Oaths can charge are given in the Rules of the Superior Courts (Fees payable to Commissioners for Oaths) (SI 616 of 2003). There is a standard fee of €10 euro per signature for verifying statements. If there is an exhibit, for example a marriage certificate, attached to the document that needs to be signed, there is a €2 charge for that. You are advised to check charges in advance.
If you need a Commissioner for Oaths, you should contact a solicitor and find out whether he/she provides a Commissioner for Oaths service to the public.
If you want to be appointed as a Commissioner for Oaths you apply by Petition to the Chief Justice. You must verify the Petition by Affidavit, accompanied by Certificates of Fitness signed by 6 members of the legal profession and by six leaders of the local business community.
Further information on applying to become a Commissioner for Oaths (pdf) is available on the Courts Service website.
If you have a question relating to this topic you can contact the Citizens Information Phone Service on 0761 07 4000 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm) or you can visit your local Citizens Information Centre.