When a claim form is received, a defendant must file an acknowledgement of service within 14 days of service of the particulars of claim (or within 14 days of service of the claim form in the Commercial Court). On the acknowledgement of service form, a defendant must indicate whether he intends to defend all or part of the claim, or intends to contest the court’s jurisdiction to hear the claim.
Unless the defendant admits the whole of the claim, a defence will need to be filed. In the defence, the defendant must state which allegations in the particulars of claim he admits, which he denies and which are neither admitted or denied. Where the defendant denies an allegation, he must state reasons for the denial and put forward his own version of events.
The defendant must file a defence either within 14 days after service of the particulars of claim, if he has not filed an acknowledgment of service, or within 28 days after service of the particulars of claim, if he has filed an acknowledgment of service.
If an acknowledgement of service is not filed, or the deadline to file a defence is missed, the claimant will be entitled to request a judgment to be entered against the defendant in default of the same.
Defendants must ensure they deal with papers received from the Court quickly. If you are in a position where you have received court papers and just don’t know what to do, contact us for a no obligation discussion on 0800 999 8880.
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