Under Oath

McKay v Vita, 2009 NY Slip Op 51135(U) (App. Term, 2nd, 2009)

Plaintiff, an attorney, brought the instant small claims action to
recover amounts allegedly due and owing for services rendered to
defendant, a former client, in connection with plaintiff's legal
representation of defendant in a Supreme Court action.

At the commencement of the nonjury trial, an oath was
administered only to defendant
, and the trial proceeded, with both
plaintiff and defendant testifying in their own behalf. A judgment was
rendered in plaintiff's favor.

Regardless of profession or affiliation to the court system,
all persons testifying in a civil action, even in a small claims
action, must be sworn
(see Diederich v Del Prior, 18 Misc 3d 132[A], 2008 NY Slip Op 50084 [App Term, 2d & 11th Jud Dists 2008]; Trensky v Johnson, 1 Misc 3d 50 [App Term, 1st Dept 2003]; Uniform Civil Rules for the District Courts [22 NYCRR] § 212.41 [j]); see also
Siegel, NY Prac § 388, at 655 [4th ed]). Plaintiff's status as an
"officer of the court" does not dispense with this requirement
(see Trensky, 1 Misc 3d at 52).

In view of the foregoing, the judgment is reversed and the matter is remitted to the District Court for a new trial.

The bold is mine.

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