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"To My Knowledge" Deemed Superfluous By The Second Circuit

March 18, 2009

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Often during depositions, the attorney defending the deposition will interrupt an answer with the phrase “if you know,” meaning that the witness should only answer the question if the witness has personal knowledge. An answer to a deposition question, or a statement in an affidavit, stating “to my knowledge” has the same meaning, according to a recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

In SCR Joint Venture, LP v. Warshawsky, the question was whether certain debts had been paid in full. The statement “to my knowledge” the creditor had not been paid in full was the same as “I know that” the creditor was not paid. The “to my knowledge” language was redundant.

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