PART 6 PART 6 — Defence And Reply
44. Filing and serving a defence(1) This Rule does not apply to a defence filed in the Small Claims Division to which Part 37 applies.(2) A defendant who wishes to defend all or part of a claim must file a defence and serve a copy of it on the claimant and every other party within 28 days after service of the claim.(3) If a defendant fails to file and serve a defence, and the period for doing so has expired, the claimant may obtain default judgment if Rule 39 allows him to do so.(4) This rule does not apply where the claimant uses the Rule 30 procedure.(5) Where the defendant makes an application under Rule 38, he need not file and serve a defence before the hearing of that application.
Amended on June 1, 2017 Amended on November 2, 2020
45. Filing and serving a reply(1) If a claimant wishes to file a reply to the defence, he must file the reply and serve the reply on all the other parties at the same time as it is filed within 21 days after service of the defence.(2) If before the defendant has filed and served a defence, the claimant applies for summary judgment under Rule 68, the defendant need not file and serve a defence before the summary judgment hearing.
46. Extending the period for filing and serving a defence(1) The parties may agree that the period for filing and serving a defence specified in Rule 44 shall be extended by up to 28 days.(2) Any extension beyond the period specified in paragraph (1) may only be obtained by application to the Court.
47. Claim stayed if not defended or admitted(1) Where at least 6 months have expired since the end of the period for filing and serving a defence, no defendant has filed or served an admission or a defence or a counterclaim and the claimant has not entered or applied for default judgment under Rule 39 or for summary judgment under Rule 68, the claim shall be stayed.(2) Where a claim is stayed under this Rule, any party may apply for the stay to be lifted.
Amended on June 1, 2017
48. The defence
The defence must contain the matters set out in Rule 49 and as may be set out in a practice direction.
Amended on June 1, 2017
49. Contents of defence(1) A defendant must state in his defence which of the allegations in the particulars of claim he admits, which of them he denies and which of them he is unable to admit or deny but which he requires the claimant to prove.(2) A defendant who fails to deal with an allegation but has set out in his defence the nature of his case in relation to the issue to which that allegation is relevant shall be taken to require that allegation to be proved.(3) Where the claim form includes a money claim, a defendant shall be taken to require that any allegation relating to the amount of money claimed be proved unless he expressly admits the allegation.(4) A defendant who fails to deal with an allegation in the manner referred to in the preceding paragraphs shall be taken to admit that allegation.(5) Where a defendant contends that he is entitled to money from the claimant and relies on this as a defence to the whole or part of the claim, the contention may be included in the defence and set-off against the claim.(6) Rule 50 applies to a defendant who wishes to make a counterclaim.
50. Counterclaim(1) A defendant may make a counterclaim against a claimant by filing a counterclaim without the Court's permission if he files it at the same time as his defence, or at any other time with the Court's permission.(2) Particulars of the defendant's claim must be contained in the counterclaim.(3) A defendant who wishes to counterclaim against a person other than the claimant must apply to the Court for an order that that person be added as an additional party.
51. Defendant's additional claim(1) A defendant may make an additional claim without the Court's permission if the additional claim is issued before or at the same time as he files his defence, or at any other time with the Court's permission.(2) A person on whom an additional claim is served becomes a party to the proceedings if he is not a party already.(3) When an additional claim is served on an existing party for the purpose of requiring the Court to decide a question against that party in a further capacity, that party also becomes a party in the further capacity specified in the additional claim.
52. Amendments of statements of case(1) A party may amend his statement of case at any time before it has been served on any other party.(2) If his statement of case has been served, a party may amend it only with the written consent of all the other parties or with the Court's permission.(3) If a statement of case has been served, an application to amend it by removing, adding or substituting a party must be made in accordance with Rule 56.
53. Permission to amend statements of case(1) The Court may allow an amendment whose effect will be to add or substitute a new claim after a period of limitation has expired, but only if the new claim arises out of the same, or substantially the same, facts as a claim in respect of which the party applying for permission has already claimed a remedy in the proceedings.(2) The Court may allow an amendment to correct a mistake as to the name of a party, but only where the mistake was genuine and not one which would cause reasonable doubt as to the identity of the party in question.(3) The Court may allow an amendment to alter the capacity in which a party claims if the new capacity is one which that party had when the proceedings started or has since acquired.
54. Further information(1) The Court may at any time order a party to clarify any matter which is in dispute in the proceedings or give additional information in relation to any such matter whether or not the matter is contained in or referred to in a statement of case.(2) Paragraph (1) is subject to any rule of law to the contrary.(3) The Court may direct that information provided by a party to another party (whether given voluntarily or following an order made under paragraph (1)) must not be used for any purpose except for that of the proceedings in which it is given or may, on the application of the party receiving the information, be used in proceedings other than the proceedings in which it is given.(4) Where the Court makes an order under paragraph (1), the party against whom it is made must file his response and serve it on the other parties within the time specified by the Court.(5) Practice directions may set out the circumstances in which a party may apply for, and in which the Court may make, an order under this Rule.