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Civil Practice Law & Rules 3020
CPLR 3020: Verification

CPLR 3020

(a) Generally.

A verification is a statement under oath that the pleading is true to the knowledge of the deponent, except as to matters alleged on information and belief, and that as to those matters he believes it to be true. Unless otherwise specified by law, where a pleading is verified, each subsequent pleading shall also be verified, except the answer of an infant and except as to matter in the pleading concerning which the party would be privileged from testifying as a witness. Where the complaint is not verified, a counterclaim, cross-claim or third-party claim in the answer may be separately verified in the same manner and with the same effect as if it were a separate pleading.

(b) When answer must be verified.

An answer shall be verified:

1. when the complaint charges the defendant with having confessed or suffered a judgment, executed a conveyance, assignment or other instrument, or transferred or delivered money or personal property with intent to hinder, delay or defraud his creditors, or with being a party or privy to such a transaction by another person with like intent towards the creditors of that person, or with any fraud whatever affecting a right or the property of another; or

2. in an action against a corporation to recover damages for the non-payment of a promissory note or other evidence of debt for the absolute payment of money upon demand or at a particular time.

(c) Defense not involving the merits.

A defense which does not involve the merits of the action shall be verified.

(d) By whom verification made.

The verification of a pleading shall be made by the affidavit of the party, or, if two or more parties united in interest are pleading together, by at least one of them who is acquainted with the facts, except:

1. if the party is a domestic corporation, the verification shall be made by an officer thereof and shall be deemed a verification by the party;

2. if the party is the state, a governmental subdivision, board, commission, or agency, or a public officer in behalf of any of them, the verification may be made by any person acquainted with the facts; and

3. if the party is a foreign corporation, or is not in the county where the attorney has his office, or if there are two or more parties united in interest and pleading together and none of them acquainted with the facts is within that county, or if the action or defense is founded upon a written instrument for the payment of money only which is in the possession of an agent or the attorney, or if all the material allegations of the pleading are within the personal knowledge of an agent or the attorney, the verification may be made by such agent or attorney.

This section of the Civil Practice Law and Rules is provided as part of a free educational service by J. Douglas Barics, attorney at law for reference only. Statutes and codes such as CPLR 3020 are frequently amended, and no representation is made that the above version of CPLR 3020 is current. Updated statutes and codes may be available at the New York State Legislature Website. No statute should be relied on without understanding controlling case law which may further interpret it. An attorney should be consulted for legal advice.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact Mr. Barics at or (631) 864-2600. For more articles and information, please visit

J. Douglas Barics, Esq. – Divorce, family, matrimonial, trial and appeals lawyer in Long Island, New York.