from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A certification on an affidavit declaring when, where, and before whom it was sworn.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The written statement by a notary public that he or she has administered and witnessed an oath or affirmation.
- n. The written statement of a person that he or she has declared an oath or affirmation.
- n. A municipal official in the Cinque Ports or in certain French towns.
- n. A life magistrate.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A person under oath; specifically, an officer of the nature of an alderman, in certain municipal corporations in England.
- n. The memorandum or certificate at the end of an asffidavit, or a bill or answer in chancery, showing when, before whom, and (in English practice), where, it was sworn or affirmed.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A sworn officer; a magistrate; a member of a permanent jury.
- n. In law, the official memorandum subscribed at the end of an affidavit, showing the time when and the person before whom it was sworn.
The written declaration above signature line on your Federal income tax return is also referred to as a jurat:
A jurat is a notary’s certification indicating that the signatory to a document (a) took an oath and (b) executed the document in the presence of the notary.
I reckon the ubiquity of "jurat" must vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction; it's use is quite common in Texas.
: Here in Georgia we also use "jurat" to refer to, e.g., the client's verification that accompanies responses to interrogatories.
The jurat is, indeed, the swearing clause of an affidavit.
I was going to say the same as Curmudgeonly Ex-Clerk — I learned the word as a second-year law student, clerking for a firm in Urbana, Illinois; I was assigned to draft an Affidavit to accompany a Motion for Summary Judgment, and reminded to “check the form of jurat for Wisconsin, since that is where the Affiant will sign it”.
No, actually it is that little statement used in some cases by notaries that says “the statement was sworn before me on some date in someplace” but I there should be a word for bias potential in jury selection to make it sound more scientific and I propose the jurat.
Early in my practice I had to become aware of the difference between an acknowledgment and a jurat, the two things a notary will do for you.
One of the first things I try to teach a new secretary is the difference between a jurat and an acknowledgment.
The reason it is mentioned so often is that there is a rule that the jurat cannot be on a page of its own (ie there must be a portion of substantive text on the same page as the jurat).